DENVER (AP) — Senate Democrats rejected a Republican attempt to legalize gold and silver coins as usable currency amid fears about the nation’s financial stability.

Democrats voted down the proposal Friday.

Republican Sen. Kent Lambert says the goal of his bill was to give consumers the option to trade in U.S. minted gold and silver if the value of the dollar falls. Gold and silver coins retain their face value over time even if the value of the coins’ precious metals rises. Lambert emphasized that the legislation would be optional.

Democratic Sen. John Morse says the legislation would result in a “record-keeping nightmare.” Currently, people who want to spend gold and silver coins must convert them to paper dollars first.

Utah legalized gold and silver as a currency option last year.

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