President Biden Opts-Out Of Re-Election Bid; Trump To Appear At Bitcoin Conference This Week

Biden opts-out

President Biden

President Joe Biden formally announced his intention to step away from running for another term as President yesterday. He stated his intention to remain in office through the end of his term in January.

See the letter.

Republican leadership, such as House Majority Whip Tom Emmer (R, MN) who called him “unfit,” asked that the President step down immediately yesterday.

what you should know: The opportunity for substantive policy discussions on any topic before the election in November would seem to be even more unlikely. But, Brendan Pedersen delivers some hopium to the crypto universe in yesterday’s Punchbowl News’ The Vault newsletter as House Agriculture digital assets subcommittee chair Rep. Dusty Johnson (R, SD) tells him, “I wouldn’t want us to pull the shades on the 118th quite yet.”

Bitcoin conference Thursday

If having former President Donald Trump as a speaker isn’t enough, Bitcoin 2024 conference organizers on Friday suggested they’re about to unveil yet another surprise (speaker) as Fox Business’ Eleanor Terrett prognosticated on X that it could be entrepreneur Elon Musk, a prolific “donatoor” to the former President’s campaign. Continue reading “President Biden Opts-Out Of Re-Election Bid; Trump To Appear At Bitcoin Conference This Week”

Presidential Veto Override Vote Fails, But Bipartisan Support Remains; Noms Hearing Drama

override vote

veto override fails

Yesterday, the House voted again to rescind the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Staff Accounting Bulletin 121 via House Joint Resolution 109 sponsored by Rep. Mike Flood (R, NE) -and *this time* proponents had to override President Joe Biden’s veto in late May, too.

A vote with a 2/3 majority of House members was required for override – 275 total votes.

The vote was over and done in a few minutes and failed with 228 votes in favor to override the President’s veto and 184 against overriding the veto.

    • 21 votes *for* override were Democrats. Some Dems switched sides from the May vote. More below.
    • All 184 Republican votes were *for* override except for Rep. Drew Ferguson (R, GA) (Rep. Ferguson erred on his vote and later corrected it. He voted for the resolution in May and also sponsored a digital asset tax bill with Rep. Wiley Nickel (D, NC) in April).

See the override’s final tally on the House Clerk’s website.

In May, there were two fewer Members of Congress voting and the resolution passed the House 228-182.

See the May tally on the House Clerk’s website. Continue reading “Presidential Veto Override Vote Fails, But Bipartisan Support Remains; Noms Hearing Drama”

SAB 121 Resolution Veto Override Vote Delayed; Nomination Hearing Brings Potential Fireworks


SAB 121 resolution delayed

The H.J.R. 109 veto override vote was delayed in the House last night until today at 10:30 a.m. (or later). You can watch it here.

In the interim, you can read House Financial Services (HFS) Chair Patrick McHenry’s (R, NC) remarks during yesterday’s debate time on the House Floor titled, “This Administration Would Rather Play Politics and Side with Power Hungry Bureaucrats Over the American People.” Read it.

HFS Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D, CA) responded with her own remarks titled, “This Resolution Is Part of a Long List of Efforts by Industry and Its Allies to Attack the Good Work of the SEC, Which Has Made Significant Progress in Protecting Investors, Maintaining Fair, Orderly, and Efficient Markets, and Facilitating Capital Formation.” Read that one.

Debate video can be found on the House Clerk’s website here.

If the veto override is successful in both houses of Congress, H.J.R.109 would remove certain reserve requirements – instigated by the SEC’s Staff Accounting Bulletin 121 (SAB 121) – on crypto custody for regulated banks.

what you should know: In advance of yesterday’s almost-vote, HFS Chair McHenry appeared on CNBC and challenged Dems to vote to override. See it.
Continue reading “SAB 121 Resolution Veto Override Vote Delayed; Nomination Hearing Brings Potential Fireworks”

Senate Agriculture Returns To Digital Assets Today; Dems Chastised About Crenshaw Nomination

CFTC and legislation

Senate Ag today

It’s been a while since Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Chair Rostin Behnam has appeared in front of Senate Agriculture regarding digital assets. But, today’s hearing titled “Oversight of Digital Commodities” could be the start of a digital assets legislative sprint before the August recess.

Live video will be here beginning at 10 a.m. ET.

According to Politico’s Eleanor Mueller, Senate Ag “Chair Debbie Stabenow gathered committee Democrats for a private meeting Monday night to strategize on crypto legislation.” Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D, NY) told Ms. Mueller later that things “went well” and she’s “optimistic.” Read more.

Senator Gillibrand is a member of Senate Ag and is keeping her proverbial foot in the door for her and Senator Cynthia Lummis’ (R, WY) “Responsible Financial Innovation Act” (RFIA) [S.2281] which may or may not be a part of whatever digital assets legislation Chair Stabenow is cooking up.

what you should know: Rumors abound of a new iteration of Chair Stabenow’s and Ranking Member John Boozman (R, AR) “Digital Commodities Consumer Protection Act” (DCCPA) [S.4760] –but without the FTX baggage.

No doubt Stabenow’s former staff counsel – Chair Behnam – is *in* on whatever next steps may be. Politico notes that Ranking Member Boozman hasn’t seen whatever Stabenow is working on which raises the question: How serious is this presumed legislative effort especially considering the dwindling schedule and divided Congress? Or, is this more about shining a positive light on congressional Democrats with pro-crypto voters (and donations!) who have previously viewed Democrats and Democratic leadership, in particular, as anti-crypto? Continue reading “Senate Agriculture Returns To Digital Assets Today; Dems Chastised About Crenshaw Nomination”

GOP Platform Adds Crypto To Its Innovation Agenda; SAB 121 Veto Override Vote Tomorrow

GOP Platform

GOP platform

The campaign website for former President Donald Trump published a Republican platform doc yesterday in advance of next week’s GOP convention in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

See blog post on Trump campaign website.

And, get the platform doc here (PDF).

Under a chapter titled, “BUILD THE GREATEST ECONOMY IN HISTORY, ” bullet #5 (on page 9 of 16 pages) tilts toward digital assets:

5. Champion Innovation
Republicans will pave the way for future Economic Greatness by leading the World in Emerging Industries.

Republicans will end Democrats’ unlawful and unAmerican Crypto crackdown and oppose the creation of a Central Bank Digital Currency. We will defend the right to mine Bitcoin, and ensure every American has the right to self-custody of their Digital Assets, and transact free from Government Surveillance and Control.”

Blockchain Association’s Ron Hammond commented on X regarding the platform release:  “…the Republican convention is next week and while crypto wasn’t a ‘top 25’ policy issue, it did make its way into the party’s policy platform…”

what you should know: For the “pro-crypto” crowd, this will be more fuel to the fire of support that has increasingly burned for the former President. Will Democrats try to fight fire with their own platform in Chicago next month? Continue reading “GOP Platform Adds Crypto To Its Innovation Agenda; SAB 121 Veto Override Vote Tomorrow”

SAB 121 ‘Veto Message’ In House This Week; Digital Assets Gets Senate Ag Hearing

SAB 121 veto message

SAB 121 this week

On Friday, House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (R, LA) announced his schedule for this week and the resolution rescinding the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) Staff Accounting Bulletin 121 “may” reappear.

The bottom of the schedule reads:

Legislation that may be considered:
Veto message to accompany H. J. Res. 109 – Providing for congressional disapproval under chapter 8 of title 5, United States Code, of the rule submitted by the Securities and Exchange Commission relating to ‘Staff Accounting Bulletin No. 121’. (Sponsored by Rep. Flood / Financial Services Committee)”

What is the “veto message”?

H.J.R.109 passed both House and Senate on a bipartisan basis in May only to receive the President’s veto.

Will Republican House leaders – led by House Financial Services Chair Patrick McHenry (R, NC) – try another vote that overrides the President whose Administration seems to be reeling post-debate? Giving Democrats an opportunity to distance themselves from the President makes logical sense.

Or, will Republican House leaders simply highlight for the voting public that the Democratic President is the one who rejected the resolution which had been approved on a bipartisan basis?

Chair McHenry’s office did not respond to a request for comment.

more tips:

House Financial Services Hearing With Treasury On Tuesday; Biden Chief Of Staff Gets Blockchain Invite

Janet Yellen

hear ye, hear ye – July 9

The House Financial Services (HFS) Committee led by Chair Patrick McHenry (R, NC) will hold a hearing on Tuesday, July 9, titled “The Annual Testimony of the Secretary of the Treasury on the State of the International Financial System. 10 a.m. start time in Rayburn. See hearing page.

what you should know: Digital assets could pop up here – in particular, stablecoins and the pending “Clarity For Payment Stablecoins Act” [H.R.4766] sponsored by Chair McHenry. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has expressed interest in Congress legislating on stablecoins in the past (see February hearing) while advocating for a “federal floor.” Republicans favor a dual banking approach which empowers the States. Also, connecting the discussion of the “Dollar as the World’s Reserve Currency” to stablecoins seems logical for this hearing with international implications.

Meanwhile, Chair McHenry awaits a must-pass in the current Congress intertwined with a final negotiation with Dem leadership and HFS Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D, CA) in order to get his stablecoin bill moving toward law. Continue reading “House Financial Services Hearing With Treasury On Tuesday; Biden Chief Of Staff Gets Blockchain Invite”

US Marshals Turn to Coinbase For Help; Circle Says Its Ready For New EU Stablecoin Law

Coinbase and US Marshals Service

Coinbase serves U.S. gov’t

Coinbase may be defending itself against complaints of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the regulator’s reluctance to offer any rules on digital assets, but that doesn’t mean other areas of the U.S. government aren’t interested in doing business with the cryptocurrency platform.

From the company blog, Coinbase said yesterday that “…After a comprehensive process, the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS), a division of the U.S. Department of Justice, selected Coinbase Prime as its partner to safeguard and trade its ‘Class 1’ (large cap) digital assets.” Read more.

more tips:

    • USMS awards Coinbase Prime a multi-million dollar contract – Blockworks

what you should know: The Marshals Service needs an exchange it can use to custody digital assets confiscated from criminals as well as turn those digital assets into U.S. dollars. If U.S. regulated “TradFi” banks were allowed to hold and trade digital assets today, they’d likely be a potential solution for USMS, too. But the SEC’s SAB 121 doesn’t allow them. So, Coinbase says, “Thank you very much.” With little competition, Coinbase likely enjoys fatter margins.

hearing next week

Politico reports that Senate Agriculture Chair Debbie Stabenow (D, MI) is moving ahead with a hearing on digital assets regulation next week – July 11 – featuring her former senior counsel, Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Chair Rostin Behnam.

Read more (subscription).

The last time Chair Behnam appeared in front of the Senate Agriculture Committee regarding digital assets was the December 2022 hearing looking at crypto platform FTX’s implosion as the Committee tried to resuscitate the Digital Commodities Consumer Protection Act (DCCPA) [S.4760].

This new hearing is potentially an effort by Senate Democrats to shed light on a rumored “DCCPA 2.0” and answers the bell rung by the Republican-led House Agriculture and House Financial Services Committees with their Financial Innovation and Technology for the 21st Century Act (FIT 21) [H.R.4763]. Continue reading “US Marshals Turn to Coinbase For Help; Circle Says Its Ready For New EU Stablecoin Law”