Biden opposes cryptocurrency bill in US

The White House expresses its opposition to the passage of the cryptocurrency market structure bill by the House of Representatives. However, President Biden is not threatening a veto, offering a glimmer of hope for the crypto industry.

White House opposition to bill HR 4763

The administration Biden a published yesterday a policy statement in which it opposes the adoption of the of the Financial Innovation and Technology for the 21st Century Act (FIT21). The White House cites concerns about the lack of investor protection if the bill were to pass Congress.

However, contrary to previous statements by Gary Gensler, Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) who believed that the crypto industry did not need additional specific legislation, the White House says it is ready to work with Congress on a future legislation regarding crypto markets.

The administration looks forward to working with Congress to ensure a comprehensive and balanced regulatory framework for digital assets, building on existing authorities, that will promote the responsible development of digital assets and payment innovation and help strengthen U.S. leadership in the global financial system.

Extract from the press release

SEC strongly opposes FIT21 bill

Hours before the White House statement, Gary Gensler of the SEC has issued its own statement opposing the FIT21 legislation. In his view, the bill would undermine the regulator’s efforts to control both traditional capital markets and crypto markets.

Gensler argues that FIT21 would redefine how securities issuers must comply with existing federal law and Supreme Court precedent. He accuses crypto companies of attempting to evade disclosure and compliance requirements imposed on securities issuers.

The FIT21 bill aims to create a new definition specific to digital assets, in order to determine whether they are securities or digital commodities, and whether the SEC or the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) should be the main regulator of the spot market. The full House was expected to consider the bill yesterday, Wednesday, with a vote scheduled for the afternoon.

Meanwhile, the Senate recently adopted joint resolution 109 which aims to cancel the controversial SEC. The latter required companies to list their customers’ crypto assets on their own balance sheets. The resolution enjoyed bipartisan support.

The Trump-Biden contrast on cryptocurrencies: between political expediency and regulatory caution

While the Biden administration continues to take a cautious approach to cryptocurrencies, its opponents there see an opportunity to win public support especially as cryptocurrency adoption is growing rapidly in the United States.

Indeed, Donald Trump a candidate in the 2024 presidential elections, recently announced that he would henceforth accept donations in cryptos for his election campaign.

However, despite its opposition to the cryptocurrency market structure bill, the Biden administration is hinting at a glimmer of hope for the crypto industry by refraining from wielding the threat of a veto.

This restraint suggests that the White House is open to working with Congress to develop a balanced regulatory framework capable of reconciling innovation and investor protection.

Such an approach, if realized, could pave the way for responsible and sustainable development of the cryptocurrency ecosystem in the US, while addressing the legitimate concerns of regulators and lawmakers.