Rep. McHenry Says Crypto Legislation Is Weeks Away

The head of the House Financial Services Committee expects to soon put forth cryptocurrency legislation.

Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., told an audience at CoinDesk’s Consensus 2023 event Friday (April 28) that the legislation could be put together in the next two months.

Asked if a bill could be signed into law by President Joe Biden in the next 12 months, McHenry said yes, but added that it’s always difficult to create new policy through legislation.

“What we plan to do over the next two months is report a deal out,” McHenry said, per a CoinDesk report. He noted that the bill will tackle both securities and commodities regimes and issues that are difficult to fix on either side.

Read more: US Senators Will Present New Crypto Legislation Next Week

Also featured on the panel was Sen. Cynthia Lummis, R-Wyo., who said she looked forward to coordinating those efforts with McHenry, adding that the House had a better chance than the Senate at moving legislation through sooner. If the House acts first on crypto, she added, it would “improve our chances” in the Senate.

“We have tried to keep partisan tinge off this subject,” Lummis said. “This is a bipartisan subject we need to address before the 2024 election.”

The legislators’ comments came days after a pair of House hearings on digital currencies that show — as PYMNTS wrote — that there’s a will in Congress to create rules for cryptocurrencies, even as the question of how to get there “remains up for debate.”

Meanwhile, the European Union (EU) has already adopted a landmark regulatory framework designed specifically to legally integrate cryptocurrency into its marketplace.

A number of figures in the crypto industry have argued that the U.S. needs to come up with clearer regulations for their industry or risk their companies moving offshore.

“It’s a critical moment here in the U.S. and, as I like to say, it’s really a moment for Congress to step up,” Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire told Bloomberg TV last week.

He argued questions are being raised about the competitiveness of the U.S. dollar amid an ongoing evolution of blockchain technology and internet-based currencies.

Places like the Middle East, Hong Kong and Singapore are all at work on their crypto regulations, but “the U.S. is behind right now,” Allaire said.