House Democrats form working group focused on cryptocurrencies

Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA), who leads the House Financial Services Committee, is gathering Democratic House members in a new working group focused on cryptocurrencies. 

Waters briefly joined the Fintech Task Force in a virtual hearing today on the subject of central bank digital currencies. She took the occasion to echo concerns over the growth of cryptocurrencies before saying:

"As cryptocurrencies grow exponentially, I've organized a working group of Democratic members to engage with regulators and experts to do a deep dive on this poorly understood and minimally regulated industry."

Waters has long been critical of cryptocurrencies, but she joins growing ranks of senior Democratic Party leaders to speak critically on the subject in recent weeks, especially since ransomware shut down the Colonial Pipeline last month. 

At a similarly CBDC-focused hearing before the Senate Economic Policy Committee last week, Senator Elizabeth Warren lambasted cryptocurrencies and, especially, the energy use of bitcoin mining.

The Biden administration has likewise highlighted ransomware as a national security concern.