In a significant development, US lawmakers are currently examining a bill that seeks to prevent the Federal Reserve from conducting experiments involving a central bank digital currency (CBDC). The bill, known as the “Digital Dollar Pilot Prevention Act,” was introduced by Congressman Alex X. Mooney (R-WV) back in May.
Closing the CBDC Pilot Program Loophole
The proposed legislation, officially designated as H.R. 3712, aims to address a potential loophole that could enable the Federal Reserve to initiate a pilot program designed to test the feasibility of issuing a CBDC.
Last Friday, Representative Patrick McHenry (R-NC), who serves as the Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, announced plans to discuss and potentially advance H.R. 3712, along with several other bills.
Congressman Mooney, when announcing the bill earlier, emphasized the importance of preventing any leeway regarding CBDCs. He stated, “Congress cannot give an inch when it comes to CBDCs. CBDCs would threaten the liberties of law-abiding Americans and are being used by authoritarian countries right now to crack down on dissent. That’s why closing this pilot program loophole is so important – to prevent the Federal Reserve from bypassing the will of Congress. I am proud to introduce this legislation to do exactly that.”
The “CBDC Anti-Surveillance State Act”
In a parallel move, House Majority Whip Tom Emmer is reintroducing the “CBDC Anti-Surveillance State Act.” Emmer’s bill aims to prohibit the Federal Reserve from issuing a retail CBDC while simultaneously safeguarding innovation and potential future developments related to genuine digital cash.
These legislative actions reflect growing concerns among US lawmakers regarding the potential implications of CBDCs on individual freedoms and the broader financial landscape. By scrutinizing and introducing bills aimed at preventing unchecked CBDC experimentation, lawmakers are taking proactive steps to ensure that any future digital currency initiatives are subject to careful oversight and consideration.
As the discussions surrounding these bills continue, the fate of CBDCs in the United States remains uncertain, with competing interests and concerns regarding privacy, surveillance, and financial innovation at the forefront of the debate.