- Senator Elizabeth Warren has supported claims she is forming an “anti-crypto army”
- Warren tweeted support of a Politico article suggesting this
- Some are worried that the recent RESTRICT Act is a stepping stone to a Bitcoin ban
Democrat senator Elizabeth Warren has embraced the suggestion that she is building an “anti-crypto army” as part of her re-election campaign, following warnings from crypto lobby group Coin Center that the planned crackdown on TikTok could lay down a marker for a full Bitcoin ban in the U.S. The news came on the same day that Securities and Exchange Commissioner (SEC) Gary Gensler echoed President Joe Biden’s call for a $2.4 billion budget boost, with crypto projects known to be his top priority.
Warren Ups Her Anti-crypto Game
Senator Warren has been a crypto skeptic for many years, throwing her weight behind several anti-crypto initiatives such as the Digital Assets Sanctions Compliance Enhancement Act (DASCEA) last year, and calling crypto a ‘shadow bank’. A recent profile on her by the political website Politico suggested that she is forming an “anti-crypto army” to aid her re-election, and Warren has reveled in this, tweeting out an audio snippet from Politico over her crypto ambitions that she is “in this fight to put our government on the side of working families”, suggesting that working families should, for some reason, not be allowed to buy cryptocurrencies:
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) March 29, 2023
Coin Center Fears Bitcoin Ban
Warren’s stance has troubled crypto lobby group Coin Center, which this week claimed that the recently proposed The RESTRICT Act, introduced by Senators Warner and John Thune and aimed at legislating against the likes of Tik-Tok, “could potentially be used to block or disrupt cryptocurrency transactions and, in extreme cases, block Americans’ access to open source tools or protocols like Bitcoin.”
Coin Center stated that it is “very concerned that an overbroad interpretation of those powers could be exploited in order to ban Americans from using entire classes of technologies, even when no foreign adversary has an actual proprietary interest in the technology as a whole.” Such overreach from the U.S. government is hardly unknown – the PATRIOT Act, implemented post-9/11, gave U.S. spying agencies sweeping new surveillance powers, which they abused to conduct mass illegal surveillance on individuals across the world:
The bill to ban TikTok is absolutely terrifying. It gives the government the ability to go after anyone they deem as a national security risk at which point they can access everything from their computer to video games to their ring light.
This is a Patriot Act for the internet. pic.twitter.com/uYea49F1b1
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) March 28, 2023
Warren’s support of an “anti-crypto army” came on the same day that Gensler applauded Joe Biden’s request to allocate $2.4 billion more funding to the SEC (surprise), saying that the money would be used to crack down further on the “crypto space”.