“There are some on the Senate side and some on the House side which fear, especially when it comes to currency, the blockchain, decentralized finance and how it’s going to evolve… will it hurt our national sovereignty, will it destabilize the dollar, is it a threat to national security?”
He spoke at the Maker Speaker Series, which is sponsored by Ethereum-based lending network MakerDAO, yesterday. “You have individuals in the House who sit not far from me on the House Financial Services Committee who would call blockchain a financial 9/11.”
Budd (Ted Budd, who serves on the Financial Services Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives), on the other hand, stated that he disagreed with such views and expressed his willingness to embrace blockchain through regulation. He continued, “I think we need to be very open to this. We need to make the US the place where this technology flourishes. It’s a new technology that’s going to evolve and I’d rather evolve here in the US than in Singapore or in Estonia or other nations that could be hostile to the U.S.”
Several members of the committee, including Chairwoman Maxine Waters (D-CA) and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MA), have positioned themselves as crypto-skeptics, according to Budd. Chairwoman Waters has asked the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency to rescind rules permitting crypto asset custodians to obtain federal banking charters. Rep. Tlaib proposed the STABLE Act, which would force stablecoin issuers like Circle to get banking licences and keep sufficient reserves in accordance with FDIC guidelines.
When asked how MakerDAO could cooperate with US regulators, the congressman said stablecoin issuers should address regulators’ concerns through open and ongoing discussions. He stated, “One of the downsides of decentralization projects is that they don’t know who to call. There’s a lot of innovation but there’s also maybe not coordination when it comes to government affairs.”
A hearing of the committee’s Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee earlier this month raised concerns that the sudden expansion of cryptocurrency trading could lead to a financial crisis similar to the subprime mortgage crisis of 2008, but it also gave lawmakers the chance to question cryptocurrency experts directly.