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Crypto Advocate Rep. Tom Emmer Enters House Speaker Contest with Eight Competitors

Ruholamin Haqshanas
Last updated: | 2 min read
Source: Twitter/@MNFarmBureau

U.S. Representative Tom Emmer, a Republican from Minnesota known for his support of cryptocurrencies and criticism of regulators, has announced his bid for House Speaker.

Emmer is one of nine candidates vying for the position, which also include Representative Byron Donalds from Florida and Representative Pete Sessions from Texas.

Having served as House Majority Whip, Emmer has been actively involved in introducing bills related to cryptocurrencies in recent years. 

One of his proposals sought to establish a new definition for tokens, while another aimed to prevent the Federal Reserve from issuing a central bank digital currency (CBDC). 

Additionally, Emmer has shown support for a comprehensive regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies and has been highly critical of Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chair Gary Gensler for what he perceives as a “regulation by harassment approach” towards digital assets.

Former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, a Republican from California, reportedly nominated Emmer.

On Sunday, he told NBC’s “Meet the Press” that the Minnesota Republican needs to get elected this week.

McCarthy himself was removed from the position earlier this month following a power struggle with lawmakers, including Representative Matt Gaetz from Florida.

As reported, crypto-friendly congressman Patrick McHenry temporarily assumed the role of US House Speaker after Kevin McCarthy was ousted by Congress. 

Crypto Bills Fail to Progress 

Some argue that McCarthy’s vacancy has caused a delay in advancing crucial crypto-related bills. 

While two bills related to cryptocurrencies have made progress in the House Financial Services Committee, which McHenry leads, their further advancement is contingent upon the selection of a new House Speaker.

Among the candidates for House Speaker, Donalds and Sessions have also expressed support for crypto innovation. 

Donalds took to social media in July to address the uncertainty caused by congressional inaction and an overly strict SEC, inhibiting blockchain innovators from conducting business in the United States.

Several other candidates, such as Representative Jim Jordan from Ohio and Representative Steve Scalise from Louisiana, have previously attempted to secure the position but failed to gather sufficient votes.

The House is expected to convene on Monday, with the vote for House Speaker likely taking place as early as Tuesday. 

Additionally, the House Financial Services Committee has scheduled several hearings for the week, including one on Wednesday focusing on “Modernizing Financial Services Through Innovation and Competition” within the digital asset sector. 

Other hearings will address topics such as Hamas and sanctions evasion, as well as Iran’s access to funds.

While the exact details of the discussions remain to be seen, concerns have been raised by lawmakers, including Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren from Massachusetts, regarding how Hamas raised millions of dollars through cryptocurrencies prior to launching attacks on Israel.