Senator Tom Emmer has Introduced the CBDC Anti-Surveillance Act

  • The politicians are concerned that it will be used for surveillance by the government.
  • The bill also requires the Federal Reserve to periodically update reserve banks on its CBDC initiatives.

Rep. Tom Emmer presented a bill on Wednesday that would prevent the Federal Reserve from distributing a central bank digital currency (CBDC) to individuals, a move he claims would violate Americans’ right to financial privacy.

The bill’s stated goal is privacy protection, but it will likely block the U.S. Federal Reserve from issuing a CBDC. The bill, as stated by Emmer, “prohibits the Fed from issuing a CBDC directly to anyone.”

Emmer, one of the most ardent supporters of cryptocurrencies in Congress, has previously presented legislation along these lines at the beginning of 2022. The bill aimed to protect users’ privacy by mandating that any digital currency created by the Fed be permissionless. However, the legislation did not make it through the legislative process.

The bill introduced today, the CBDC Anti-Surveillance State Act, includes two additions compared to the version introduced in 2022. The bill aims to prevent the Federal Reserve from utilizing a CBDC to carry out monetary policy and exert economic control. The bill also seeks to mandate that the Federal Reserve communicate with reserve banks and publish quarterly reports on the progress of any CBDC initiatives it undertakes.

Moreover, Enner said the legislation had widespread support from at least nine other Republican lawmakers. One of the proponents of the draft bill includes House Committee on Financial Services Vice-Chairman and the newly designated digital assets subcommittee Chairperson French Hill.

CBDCs are being developed all across the globe. According to the CBDC tracker of the Atlantic Council, eleven nations have already introduced a digital currency issued by their central bank. Moreover, except for Nigeria, all of them are in the Caribbean, where financial restrictions have been implemented. As many as 72 nations are still in the early stages of development, while 17 are already running pilot programs.

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