WASHINGTON - The Senate on Thursday agreed to authorize
the U.S. Treasury Department to issue a $1 commemorative
coin to honor the 200th anniversary of the birth of
In a voice vote, the Senate approved a bill offered
by Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., who is a co-chair of the
Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission.
The sale of the coin, which will be issued in 2009,
will help fund the bicentennial celebration and the
continued study of Lincolnís life. The commission hopes
the coin sale will generate as much as $3 million, which
is considered critical for its celebration plans.
The design for the coin will be selected by the
treasury secretary after consultation with the
Commission of Fine Arts and the Lincoln Bicentennial
The bill was co-sponsored by 71 members of the
100-member Senate, including Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill.
Rep. Ray LaHood, R-Peoria, also co-chair of the Lincoln
Bicentennial Commission, has sponsored similar
legislation that is pending in the House.
In December, Congress gave final approval to a bill
authorizing a redesign of the back side of the penny,
also to be issued in 2009. The profile of Lincoln on the
front of the penny will remain the same.