A Florida man has sued U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson with the goal of recognizing 10 men he says were president before George Washington. He wants Paulson to add these men into the Presidential $1 coin series.
Stanley L. Klos of Palm Beach, Florida would like everyone to know and recognize the men who were Presidents of the United States in Congress Assembled—leaders after the Articles of Confederation were adopted in March of 1781 and prior to Washington’s presidency in 1789.
The men Klos speaks of are Samuel Huntington, Thomas McKean, John Hanson, Elias Boudinot, Thomas Mifflin, Richard Henry Lee, John Hancock, Nathanial Gorham, Arthur St. Clair and Cyrus Griffin. Men, he says and talks about in his book, President Who? Forgotten Founders, who not only held top positions in U.S. history, but signed national documents as the President.
"If you go into the national archive, the first thing that greets you is the Treaty of Paris proclamation signed under the great seal of the United States of America by our president, Thomas Mifflin,” Klos says. “It ended the war with Great Britain.”
So why sue Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson? Paulson is over the United States Mint, and the Presidential $1 Coin Act of 2005 requires,
"…the Secretary of the Treasury to mint coins in commemoration of each
of the Nation’s past Presidents…"
It further directs the Secretary of Treasury in the general design of every Presidential $1 coin:
"…The design on the obverse shall contain— the name and likeness of a President of the United States…"
In effect, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson is the top government official responsible for carrying out the requirements set within the law for the Presidential $1 coins and minting them.
The lawsuit was filed in the Middle District of Florida on May 1, 2008. U.S. District Judge Steven D. Merryday will preside over the case.
Getting a positive judgment may be difficult. Although historical leaders in their own right, Presidents of the United States in Congress Assembled invoked different authority and responsibilities compared to the later constitutionally created position of President of the United States.
A short United Press International article of this story follows.