US lawmakers urge Mnuchin to withdraw from potential crypto pockets regs
Four U.S. lawmakers want Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to reconsider his alleged rules on crypto wallets.
Reps Warren Davidson (R-Ohio), Tom Emmer (R-Minn.), Ted Budd (RN.C.) and Scott Perry (R-Penn.) Sent a letter to Mnuchin on Wednesday expressing “our concern "Self-hosted wallet regulations that the secretary apparently intends to implement in the coming weeks" voiced rumors.
Brian Armstrong, CEO of Coinbase, tweeted last month that Mnuchin "plans to rush these new regulations" that would apparently require a crypto exchange to validate customer details for self-hosted wallets before moving in cryptocurrencies from their platforms and could send in the wallets.
According to Wednesday's letter, this potential regulation would "hinder American leadership", prevent US actors from participating in space, and "prevent the Treasury Department from preventing illegal actors from exploiting the financial system."
The requirement of an exchange to maintain that much KYC data could also compromise user privacy, the legislature wrote. Rather, the US should have “regulatory parity” between the traditional financial system and the crypto ecosystem.
Enforcing regulations on self-hosted wallets could have the unintended effect of turning anyone currently using one into a criminal, the letter added.
In a statement posted online, Davidson said, "Before the Treasury Department issues midnight rules for regulating self-hosted wallets, Secretary Mnuchin should come to the House of Peoples and speak to officials about what its regulations would do."
"Overregulation of self-hosted wallets will smash an emerging industry and leave the United States behind the rest of the world in harnessing the power of blockchain and cryptocurrency," he added.
This is the second letter most of these lawmakers sent out on Wednesday. Previously, Emmer had sent a letter to the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Jay Clayton, in which he asked the securities regulator to create clear guidelines for the safekeeping of crypto and to instruct the financial industry regulator to allow broker-dealers out of the room .
Clayton plans to step down in late 2020.