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Mnuchin Pushes Discredited Arguments Against Cryptocurrency

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On news today that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin warned against Facebook’s proposed digital currency, Libra, as a national security risk and potential boon to “money launderers and terrorist financiers,” CEI senior fellow John Berlau responded, saying the Secretary’s position is wrong and detrimental.

“It is extremely disappointing that Treasury Secretary Mnuchin is trotting out tired, discredited arguments against cryptocurrency similar to those uttered by Wall Street and the banking establishment. He and President Trump instead should talk to the great American entrepreneurs in this vibrant sector and their champions in Congress, such as conservative House Freedom Caucus leaders Warren Davidson (R-OH) and Ted Budd (R-NC). Both have introduced legislation to simplify rules and reduce red tape on this sector.

“As Mnuchin knows, cryptocurrency operators in the U.S. are already required to register with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network and assist with anti-money laundering efforts. In addressing illicit use of cryptocurrency, Congressman Davidson points out – as many other experts have – that it is often far easier for law enforcement to track cryptocurrency than untraceable dollars, because cryptocurrency transactions are recorded on a public, distributed ledger known as a blockchain. “When cash goes away, cash is gone,” Congressman Davidson says. “When cryptocurrency is moved, it’s inherently traceable.”  (https://youtu.be/jsPkM4505jU

“Taking a broad view of national security, as the Trump administration often has, President Trump and Secretary Mnuchin should realize that the real danger is red tape causing the U.S. to fall behind in producing this technology and being overtaken by rival nations such as China.”

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