The second Republican presidential debate on Sept. 16 closed out with speculation on who should be the first woman featured on U.S. paper currency. For the penultimate question of the three-hour debate, CNN moderator Jake Tapper queried the 11 presidential hopefuls on which woman they would personally select to appear on the $10 bill (video below).
Carly Fiorina distinguished herself from her male peers by answering that she would not alter either the $10 or $20 bill.
The question gave each candidate a chance to express which woman they believe exemplifies American values.
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul chose suffragist icon Susan B. Anthony, whose face has already been featured on the U.S. $1 coin.
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Mike Huckabee chose his wife, Janet. He finished with a crack that she would then be able to spend her own money.
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio selected Rosa Parks, commending her as an ordinary American who helped instigate sweeping social change. Texas Sen. Ted Cruz agreed with Rubio’s choice, and added that he would put Parks on the $20 bill instead.
The $10 bill features founding father Alexander Hamilton, who is largely credited with devising the U.S. financial system. The $20 bill features President Andrew Jackson, who antagonized the U.S. bank throughout his presidency.
Ben Carson chose his mother, Sonya, describing her as an example of the American dream.
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Current front-runner Donald Trump gave compliments to his daughter, Ivanka, but ultimately went with Rosa Parks.
Both Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Ohio Gov. John Kasich chose non-Americans. Bush chose former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher while Kasich selected Nobel Peace Prize-winner Mother Teresa. Both candidates admitted that these choices might not be deemed legally viable.
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker voiced his admiration for American Red Cross founder Clara Barton, a Civil War nurse who established the organization in 1881.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie selected the second first lady, Abigail Adams, who was highly influential on her husband President John Adams as a wife and political confidante.
Fiorina avoided making a selection.
Fiorina told the audience: “I wouldn’t change the $10 bill or the $20 bill. I think, honestly, it’s a gesture. Don’t think it helps to change our history. What I would think is we ought to recognize that women are not a special interest group. Women are the majority of this nation. We are half the potential of this nation. And this nation will be better off when every woman has the opportunity to live the life she chooses.”
The Sept. 16 debate was the first to feature Fiorina among the top-tier candidates for the Republican nomination.