• House Financial Services Committee Republicans criticize the Biden Administration for their digital asset policies.
• The first hearing of the Digital Assets, Financial Technology and Inclusion Subcommittee will take place on March 9th and focus on Biden’s policies.
• Representatives from the crypto industry including BitGo co-founder Mike Belshe and Coinbase Chief Legal Officer Paul Grewal are expected to testify at the hearing.
Republican Criticism of Biden Administration
House Republicans have criticized the Biden administration for their approach to digital asset policies ahead of the inaugural hearing of the United States House of Representatives subcommittee focused on digital assets, financial technology and inclusion. In a memo released March 6th, they suggested that certain actions taken by this administration could push the digital asset ecosystem overseas.
First Hearing of Digital Asset Subcommittee
The first hearing of this subcommittee is scheduled to take place on March 9th and will focus on the Biden administration’s “attack on the digital asset ecosystem”. Representatives from the crypto industry including BitGo co-founder Mike Belshe and Coinbase Chief Legal Officer Paul Grewal are expected to testify at this hearing. Additionally, there are five pieces of draft legislation related to cryptocurrency currently being reviewed by this subcommittee – including Representative Patrick McHenry’s Keep Innovation in America Act.
Regulatory Framework Needed
In his prepared testimony, Belshe argued that “regulators can either declare that digital assets are regulated in the same way as other assets, and thereby apply the same rules, or regulators can say that they are different, and create new rules”. He also emphasized that what regulators cannot do is claim that assets are different while applying existing rules. These statements suggest an urgent need for a workable regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies in order to protect consumers while still taking advantage of their benefits.
Keep Innovation in America Act
The Keep Innovation in America Act proposed by Representative Patrick McHenry seeks to provide clarity around how cryptocurrency regulations should be applied across federal agencies by establishing a working group composed of representatives from these agencies as well as outside experts who would advise them on how best to implement regulations regarding cryptocurrency businesses and activities. This includes providing guidance around taxation exemptions for virtual currency transactions as well as anti-money laundering measures related to crypto activities.
The upcoming hearing provides an opportunity for representatives from both sides of congress to discuss potential solutions when it comes to regulating cryptocurrencies. It is important that appropriate measures are taken so that innovation can continue while protecting consumers from any potential risks associated with cryptocurrencies or related activities such as money laundering or terrorism financing activities