Senator Ted Cruz, a Republican, has filed legislation to prevent the Federal Reserve from creating “direct-to-consumer” digital money.
Cruz said in a March 21 statement that he filed the measure to prevent the Fed from building a retail CBDC “that could be used as a federal financial surveillance tool.”
Cruz remarked that it is “more crucial than ever” to guarantee that U.S. policy on digital currencies protects “financial privacy, maintains the dollar’s dominance, and promotes innovation,” adding:
“CBDCs that fail to adhere to these three fundamental principles could allow the Federal Reserve to transform into a retail bank, collect personally identifiable information on users, and track their transactions indefinitely.”
Cruz said the federal government lacked the right to create a CBDC unilaterally. “We should be empowering entrepreneurs, encouraging innovation, and expanding individual liberty,” he said.
Republicans Mike Braun of Indiana and Chuck Grassley of Iowa support the anti-CBDC legislation proposed by Ted Cruz.
If the measure becomes law, it will prevent the government from “snooping” on the money of industrious Americans. Grassley explained:
“The American people should be able to spend their money as they see fit, without the possibility of the government tracking every transaction.”
The anti-CBDC bill is the second effort by Cruz, Braun, and Grassley, who presented a similar measure on March 30, 2022, to prevent the Fed from directly issuing CBDCs to people.
However, after over a year, the measure has yet to pass the introduction phase. In November, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and numerous major financial institutions, including BNY Mellon, Citi, HSBC, and Wells Fargo, engaged in a 12-week pilot program with Mastercard and SWIFT to test the use of digital dollars.
Not only Cruz, Braun, and Grassley are pushing to eliminate CBDCs in the United States. On March 20, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis urged state legislators to pursue legislation prohibiting the use of digital currency in Florida.
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