The following is a statement from Senator Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., relating to the announcement that an image of Sacajawea has been chosen for the new dollar coin and his reaction to a bill introduced by a House member who seeks to negate that decision.
"Congress is beyond debating the merits of Sacajawea or the Statue of Liberty. I want to ensure that the dollar coin design advisory committee's recommentdation isn't undermined. As we all know, the advisory committee recommended a coin "inspired" by Sacajawea. The advisory committee was formed to recommend a design. Its members represented a broad spectrum of views and the public was invited to give presentations to the committee. After taking it all in the committee voted 6-1 for Sacajawea. Arguments against her image were obviously not persuasive. The reason Secretary Rubin formed the committee was to take politics out of the decision as much as possible. I'm hard pressed to think of anything more political than introducing a bill to overturn the process and the decision of the committee.
"The Statue of Liberty has long been a powerful symbol of our country and the opportunities it provides. My ancestors were, like so many others, greeted by the statue when they sailed from across the sea into N.Y. Harbor. But like the Statue of Liberty, Sacajawea is also a symbol of freedom and new beginnings. She was a living breathing person who helped lead us to the 'new world' of the West.
"I made my own views known to Secretary Rubin and am pleased Sacajawea has been chosen. I hope now the process will be followed to completion. So far, I have no plans to introduce legislation forcing that decision, but I will continue to do what I can to promote Sacajawea as the image for the coin."