Legislation to Redesign Lincoln Penny Passes Senate; Creates Presidential $1 Coin Program

To: National Circuit
Contact: Mark W. Weller, Americans for Common Cents (www.pennies.org)
(202) 312-7426

Legislation to Redesign Lincoln Penny Passes Senate; Creates Presidential $1 Coin Program Similar to 50 State Quarters Program

November 21 ─ The United States Senate passed bipartisan legislation on November 18 that would make historic redesign changes to the reverse side of the Lincoln penny that currently pictures the Lincoln Memorial.  Senator John Sununu (R-New Hampshire) and Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada) sponsored the "Presidential $1 Coin Act of 2005" (S. 1047), which had the backing of more than 70 Senate cosponsors.

S. 1047 would direct the United States Mint to produce pennies in 2009, the 200th anniversary year of President Lincoln's birth, that keep the portrait of Lincoln on one side and four designs representing a different aspect of his life on the reverse: his birth and early childhood in Kentucky; his formative years in Indiana; his professional life in Illinois; and his presidency in Washington.

The legislation by Senators Sununu and Reid combines the Lincoln penny redesign with provisions to create a presidential $1 coin series, modeled on the Mint's widely popular 50 States Quarters Program.  In addition to the presidential coins, the bill authorizes a $10 bullion coin with images of the nation's first ladies.  S. 1047 also stipulates that dollar coins bearing the image of Sacagawea, the early 19th century American Indian guide and interpreter of the Lewis and Clark expedition, will continue to be issued in conjunction with the presidential coins.

According to Mark Weller, the Executive Director of Americans for Common Cents, the passage of S. 1047 is highly noteworthy.  "President Lincoln personifies what we want our Presidents to be," Weller said.  "A Lincoln penny series would dramatically highlight the important stages of Lincoln's life, and his political and cultural significance to our nation," Weller added.

According to the Americans for Common Cents research, an overwhelming majority of Americans ─ approximately three-fourths ─ support keeping the penny a part of America's currency system.  "The alternative to the penny is rounding prices, which is something consumers abhor," Weller said.  The House of Representatives passed similar, although not identical, legislation to S. 1047 in April of this year.  Congress is expected to enact a final version of the legislation before the end of 2005.


Americans for Common Cents (http://www.pennies.org) is a broad-based advocacy group of business, charitable, and numismatic organizations.  The group formed in 1990 in response to Congressional threats to eliminate the penny.


President's Day - A Time to Celebrate Abraham Lincoln and Cheaper Pennies

President's Day gives us the chance - at least once a year - to recognize Abraham Lincoln's immense contributions to the country and a legacy that continues to enrich us daily.

President Lincoln is a unique cultural and historical figure," said Mark Weller, Executive Director of Americans for Common Cents. "It's not just that the front of the penny has had Lincoln's image since 1909, it's what Lincoln did for our nation," Weller added "He possessed all the qualities we want in a president -- the ability to unite a divided nation, honesty, strength, and humility," Weller concluded.

For the full press release, please click here


Special Announcement!

Pennies for Pasta and Pennies for Patients

These are run by The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society through its local chapters as part of its renamed Student Series program:  www.studentseries.org

For more information, you should call your local Chapter which may be found by going to the Society's website at: www.lls.org

Please note Americans for Common Cents does not get actively engaged in any fundraising activities.

Collapse of the zinc market means the penny is cheaper to make; saves taxpayers!

A collapse in metals prices means U.S. coins, including the penny, are less expensive to make. The penny has reached its lowest cost in seven years. Each 1-cent coin, made almost entirely of zinc, now costs the taxpayer much less to produce and its likely to stay that way for the foreseeable future.

Click here to read more.

More than Two-Thirds of Americans Still Favor Keeping the Penny

Recent Poll Shows Increasing Penny Support and Concern About Price Increases If Penny Is Eliminated

WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A poll released today by Americans for Common Cents (ACC) continues to show overwhelming and increasing support for the penny by the American public. 68% of those surveyed favor keeping the penny in circulation, representing a slight increase since the last poll in 2012.

"These results confirm the strong and unwavering support the penny continues to receive from Americans," said Mark Weller, Executive Director of ACC. Weller's group includes more than 50 organizations that support continued production of the penny.

For the full article, please click here

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