The Senate has assigned pro-bitcoin senator Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) to the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs committee, and she's already planning on ways to educate her colleagues on digital assets.
“Through my role on the Banking Committee, I hope to shine a light on many of these pioneering efforts and work with federal regulators to ensure that regulation of digital assets are structured to encourage innovation, instead of stifling it," she said about her appointment. "I also look forward to providing regulatory relief to our community banks and ensuring that we have vibrant, safe financial markets.”
Lummis expressed her intention to educate her fellow senators. On Anthony Pompliano's podcast, Lummis announced that she's forming a financial innovation caucus in the Senate to promote "a proper understanding and responsible regulation of things like digital assets and emerging financial technologies," according to her office.
She also touted bitcoin as a better store of value for consumers, particularly as a hedge against the dollar. Lummis herself is the first sitting senator known to hold the asset.
The proposed caucus would seek to counter the argument that cryptocurrencies are primarily a money-laundering tool, in order to create more space for innovation in the U.S., according to Lummis. She specifically mentioned stablecoins as one such area of innovation, referencing both the Facebook-backed stablecoin project Diem and the Federal Reserve's interest in a possible central bank digital currency (CBDC). To that end, the caucus plans to meet with the Fed.
Lummis has already started meeting with regulators on behalf of digital asset innovation. She told The Pomp Podcast that she'd already had a phone conversation with Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, saying she sensed the Treasury Secretary has an open mind with balanced skepticism when it comes to digital assets. Yellen made similar comments in her written testimony for her Senate confirmation.
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