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Bill to Exempt Crypto From Securities Laws Will Be Delayed, Says Attorney: ‘Don’t Hold Your Breath’

Last Updated March 4, 2021 2:53 PM
Samantha Chang
Last Updated March 4, 2021 2:53 PM

Crypto attorney Jake Chervinsky doesn’t believe that a bill to exempt cryptocurrencies and ICOs from US securities law will be approved anytime soon. He cited the bureaucratic inefficiency of Washington as a key reason for his pessimistic outlook.

“I don’t know if there’s any validity to the rumor that the Token Taxonomy Act will be reintroduced in Congress on February 14,” Chervinsky tweeted. “But even if true, there will be months or years of Committee hearings and revisions before the bill could even possibly see a vote. Don’t hold your breath.”

‘Light-Touch’ Regulation

As it is, the wheels have already been set in motion for the Token Taxonomy Act. In December 2018, Republican Congressman Warren Davidson and Democrat Rep. Darren Soto introduced the legislation.

The Token Taxonomy Act (TTA) would amend the Securities Exchange Act to specifically exclude crypto from securities laws.

This bipartisan legislation draws a bright line for businesses and regulators by defining a “digital token,” and clarifies that securities laws do not apply to companies that use blockchain once they reach their goal of becoming a functional network.

Congressmen: Laws Must Not Choke Innovation

Congressmen Davidson and Soto said the “light-touch” legislation would provide much-needed regulatory clarity to the crypto market. In addition, it would ensure that the United States remains competitive in the burgeoning industry.

In the bill he introduced last month, Davidson reaffirmed the sentiments he expressed in June 2018. “We need a light-touch regulatory framework that provides certainty for the ICO market,” he told CNBC (see video).

In a December 2018 statement , Rep. Warren Davidson underscored the importance of avoiding overly restrictive laws that would stifle innovation.

In the early days of the Internet, Congress passed legislation that provided certainty and resisted the temptation to over-regulate the market. Our intent is to achieve a similar win for America’s economy and for American leadership in this innovative space.

This bill provides the certainty American markets need to compete with Singapore, Switzerland, and others who are aggressively growing their blockchain economies.

Bitcoin Trolls Miss the Forest for the Trees

Meanwhile, bitcoin bashers are gleefully gloating over the current market slump. However, experts underscore that focusing solely on daily price movements is losing sight of the forest for the trees.

Behind the scenes, there’s a major push underway to legitimize the market in order to promote mainstream adoption of crypto. And that starts with targeted regulation to win consumer trust.

Crypto Industry Becoming Political Power Players

As CCN.com reported, Republican Congressman Tom Emmer unveiled three bills that would support the development of crypto and blockchain in September 2018. They are:

  • Resolution Supporting Digital Currencies and Blockchain Technology.
  • Blockchain Regulatory Certainty Act.
  • Safe Harbor for Taxpayers with Forked Assets Act.

Emmer — who is co-chairman of the Congressional Blockchain Caucus — urged the US to  prioritize the development of blockchain and foster an environment that would enable the private sector to lead on innovation.

This is an exciting time for blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies. Legislators should be embracing emerging technologies and providing a clear regulatory system that allows them to flourish in the United States.

In addition to launching the Congressional Blockchain Caucus, a pro-crypto lobbying group was established in September 2018 by three of the biggest cryptocurrency companies in the United States: Coinbase, Circle, and the Digital Currency Group.

These developments are undeniable signs that the industry is taking major steps to promote and facilitate the mainstream adoption of cryptocurrencies. Progress will not happen overnight — but it’s happening. So stay tuned.