Friday, July 06, 2007

Not Sufficiently Godly

If there is any question about which wing of the Republican Party--theocratic or fiscally conservative--has ascendency, let this settle it:

The House has apparently changed its mind about how the new dollar coins honoring U.S. presidents should display the national motto “In God We Trust,” after more than 600 million of them have been produced.

An amendment by Rep. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., adopted last week to the fiscal 2008 financial services spending bill (HR 2829) would bar funding for minting $1 coins with the motto on the edge rather than on the face.

The move reverses Congress’ expressed intent in the 2005 law authorizing the presidential coin program, which specified that in order to enhance the “aesthetic beauty” of the coin, “it is appropriate to move many of the mottos and emblems, the inscription of the year, and the so-called ‘mint marks’ that currently appear on the two faces of each circulating coin to the edge of the coin.”

But after seeing the new coins, which were first issued in February, Wicker felt that the motto was not sufficiently prominent, spokesman Kyle Steward said Thursday.

It’s unclear whether the Senate will follow the House on this issue. The Senate Appropriations Committee is expected to mark up its draft version of the legislation next week.

It resists further commentary.

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