US & Canada

Jeb Bush wants Margaret Thatcher on $10 note

Jeb Bush said he'd put UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher on the $10. Were there no U.S. women available? #GOPDebate Image copyright Other
Image caption Al-Jazeera mocked up a note for a tweet

US Republican presidential hopeful Jeb Bush has picked the UK's former Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, as his choice for the face of the $10 bill.

The former Florida governor made the surprise suggestion during a televised debate for the top Republicans vying for the presidential nomination.

All 11 candidates were asked who they would choose, now the US Treasury has announced plans to put a woman on the redesigned note.

Mr Bush's choice drew applause.

"I would go with Ronald Reagan's partner, Margaret Thatcher," he said, noting it was "probably illegal" and unlikely to happen because she is not American.

But he added: "A strong leader is what we need in the White House, and she certainly was a strong leader that restored the United Kingdom into greatness."

He was not the only Republican to pick a foreigner to grace the new note, which comes into circulation in 2020.

Mother Teresa was the choice of the Governor of Ohio, John Kasich.

Two candidates picked civil rights heroine Rosa Parks, while rising star Carly Fiorina dismissed the question as gesture politics.

Why is Margaret Thatcher so loved in the US?

Image copyright PA

The endurance of the high esteem in which she was held was illustrated in 2009, when the US House of Representatives passed a resolution "recognizing the 30th anniversary of the election of Margaret Thatcher as the first female Prime Minister of Great Britain."

She is still tremendously loved on the American right because she unleashed the free market, beat the unions and went to war with the bad guys, says Michael Goldfarb, an American journalist in London.

Why is Margaret Thatcher so loved in the US?

How do you get your face on the dollar?