Facebook and Libra Set for Two US Parliament Hearings in Two Days
American lawmakers look set to give Facebook a thorough grilling over the social network’s forthcoming Libra project next month, with Congress calling Mark Zuckerberg’s company in for a hearing on July 17.
Per an official press release, Congresswoman Maxine Waters, the Chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee, has called a full committee hearing entitled “Examining Facebook’s Proposed Cryptocurrency and Its Impact on Consumers, Investors, and the American Financial System.”
The hearing will take place at 10am on July 17, just 24 hours after Facebook’s hearing in front of the American Senate – with dozens of parliamentarians seemingly gunning for Facebook to halt Libra.
Waters has been an outspoken critic of Libra ever since Facebook made its cryptocurrency announcement, and the full committee meeting could well be a hostile environment for the social network. As previously reported, Waters last week called for Facebook to halt Libra, and stated that Facebook’s plans are a “wake-up call to get serious about the privacy and national security concerns, cybersecurity risks, and trading risks that are posed by cryptocurrencies.”
Fellow committee member and Congressman Patrick McHenry has previously called for a hearing and stated, “There are many open questions as to the scope and scale of the [Libra] project and how it will conform to our global financial regulatory framework.”
The Senate’s 25-member Banking Committee is unlikely to go much easier on Facebook in its July 16 hearing. In a strongly worded Tweet, Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown – the de facto second-in-command of the committee – warned of the danger of Facebook potentially operating “a risky new cryptocurrency out of a Swiss bank account.”
Facebook is already too big and too powerful, and it has used that power to exploit users’ data without protecting… https://t.co/Hk9EXFZsxf— Sherrod Brown (@SenSherrodBrown)
The Senate committee chairman Mike Crapo last year noted that “some regulatory and oversight questions still remain” in the cryptocurrency sphere.