Senator Cynthia Lummis, the first female Senator in United States history to own Bitcoin, has announced plans to launch a Financial Innovation Caucus to educate her fellow senators about cryptocurrency and digital assets.
Lummis appeared on Anthony Pompliano’s podcast on February 2, announcing their intention to start the caucus.
“We hope to use it as a stepping stone to educate members of the US Senate and their staff specifically about Bitcoin, but also about other opportunities for cryptocurrency, financial innovation and blockchain.”
Lummis said the caucus would first work to tackle the false narrative about digital assets and crypto used for money laundering, noting that research by blockchain forensics firm Chainalysis shows “cryptocurrency-related crimes are decreasing are considered criminal activities with cash ”.
Lummis noted that she recently spoke with Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen – whose recent comments on the use of crypto in illicit funding raised concerns about in-depth regulatory action that reverberated across the crypto sphere.
Trying to allay the crypto community’s concerns about Yellen, Lummis described the Treasury Secretary as “open” to crypto. However, the Senator stated, “It will take a lot of work to get to an open dialogue that is free from the clutter of seeing this jerky response to concerns that all crypto is exposed to criminal activity. ”
“Crypto regulations must leave room for innovation.”
Senator Lummis bought Bitcoin in 2013 and 2014 and has since touted Bitcoin’s utility as a store of value. She compared Bitcoin to the permanent Mineral Trust Fund, which she oversaw while serving as Treasurer in Wyoming in the 2000s.
“I was a state treasurer in Wyoming in the first half of the 21st century and was always looking for a store of value. We have permanent funds in Wyoming that are based on the extraction of minerals and oil and gas from the ground. We’re taking a severance payment […] out of minerals and invest it in a permanent fund, ”she said.
“The concept of this permanent mineral trust fund is that after the minerals are gone, we will still have income as we have invested the proceeds and continued to invest them in a diversified asset allocation […] Bitcoin reminded me of our permanent mineral fund. “
“Only 21 million Bitcoin will be mined, and since it is a finite resource, I see it as a very good store of value,” Lummis concluded.