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Statements on Introduced Bills and Joint Resolutions

Location: Washington DC


S. 2568. A bill to require the Secretary of the Treasury to mint coins in commemoration of the tercentenary of the birth of Benjamin Franklin, and for other purposes; to the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs.

Mr. BIDEN. Mr. President, I rise today to introduce the Benjamin Franklin Commemorative Coin Act. This bill will authorize the U.S. Mint to produce a limited edition silver coin, in two designs, to honor the achievements of Benjamin Franklin, America's distinguished scientist, statesman, inventor and diplomat.

In 2006, the United States will host a worldwide celebration marking the 300th anniversary of Franklin's birth on January 17, 1706. Activities, lectures and exhibits are being developed through the efforts of the Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary Commission, as ordered by the Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary Commission Act, Public Law 107-202. The Commission, on which I serve with other elected officials and private sector partners, is responsible for providing a proper tribute to one of our most remarkable founding fathers. Surcharges on the sale of the coin would help the commission pay for activities it plans for celebrating Benjamin Franklin's birthday.

During the American Revolution, Franklin designed the first American coin-the "Continental" penny-and, until 1979, he was the only non-President of the United States whose image graced circulating coin and paper currency. it is only fitting that we honor Franklin's legacy through issuance of a commemorative coin.

This bill is the Senate companion to H.R. 3024, which was introduced by my colleague from Delaware, Congressman MIKE CASTLE, and it presently enjoys 326 cosponsors. As celebrations for our great leader are planned, I hope that my colleagues will join me in supporting a commemorative coin for this important American. I ask unanimous consent that the text of this bill be printed in the RECORD.

There being no objection, the bill was ordered to be printed in the RECORD, as follows:

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