During the recent Republican Party presidential debate, a notable shift in political discourse regarding crypto emerged as US presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy openly criticized US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chair Gary Gensler, alongside other federal agencies, for their handling of digital currency regulation.
Presidential Candidates Throws Jabs At Gensler And Current Policies
Ramaswamy, addressing the audience, described the SEC’s approach as “nothing short of embarrassing,” particularly highlighting Gensler’s refusal to classify the Ethereum token as a commodity in congressional hearings.
His comments were motivated by the scrutiny of regulatory bodies of crypto enthusiasts, and industry stakeholders. When the moderator asked Ramaswamy if his crypto plan, which he said would “ensure economic freedom for Americans,” also “ensure economic freedom for fraudsters, criminals and terrorists,” Ramaswamy replied:
Look, fraudsters, criminals and terrorists have being defrauding people for a long time. Our regulations need to catch up with the current moment.
The US presidential candidate emphasized that the current regulatory mechanisms are “inadequate,” citing the high-profile downfall of FTX and its CEO, Sam Bankman-Fried, as a prime example of the existing system’s shortcomings. Ramaswamy added:
The fact that SBF was able to do what he did at FTX shows that whatever they have is [in] the current framework isn’t working.
The debate further saw Ron DeSantis, another pro-crypto presidential candidate, voicing his opposition to the implementation of a central bank digital currency (CBDC). DeSantis warned against the potential risks associated with CBDCs, such as heightened regulatory control over individual purchases.
— Taylor Barr (@taylorjbarr) December 7, 2023
The pro-crypto presidential candidate proceeded to vow to discard any proposals for CBDCs, should he be elected, noting:
On day one as Predident, we take the idea of CBDCs and throw it in the trash can. It’ll be dead on arrival.
Embracing Crypto: A New Trend In US Presidential Campaigns?
The use of crypto has become a notable theme in the upcoming US presidential election. Some candidates are increasingly aligning their campaigns with crypto-friendly messages, which appears to counter the current administration’s less enthusiastic stance on digital assets.
This trend was further underscored by a report revealing Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s Bitcoin investments, valued between $100,001 and $250,000.
In a recent X Spaces interview with crypto investor Scott Melker, Kennedy expressed his support for Bitcoin, labeling it as the “currency of freedom.” He shared his journey into the digital currency world, revealing that he invested in Bitcoin for each of his seven children, aligning his actions with his public advocacy for the digital asset.
Amid these political campaigns involving crypto, Bitcoin and the rest of the crypto market continue to rise. Particularly, BTC over the past week has surged more than 10% and currently trades for $43,361 at the time of writing.
Featured image from iStock, Chart from TradingView