Senator Warren Challenges Ex-Gov Officials in Crypto Advocacy Roles

Senator Elizabeth Warren is taking a stand against the concerning alliance between cryptocurrency interests and a cadre of former defense, national security, and law enforcement officials.

The move aims to stop bipartisan efforts in Congress and the Biden Administration to regulate cryptocurrency in funding groups like Hamas.

Warren Urges Against Former Government Staff Joining the Crypto Industry

In a recent letter to Kristin Smith, CEO of the Blockchain Association, Warren discouraged the hiring of former government officials for crypto advocacy in their push for regulations.

“I write regarding a troubling new report that your association and other crypto interests are “flexing a not-so secret weapon: a small army of former defense, national security and law enforcement officials” to work on your behalf.”

Warren highlighted that following the Hamas attack in Israel, revelations surfaced indicating crypto’s alleged involvement in facilitating terrorist operations.

She noted the CEO of Binance, Changpeng “CZ” Zhao, pleaded guilty to charges involving failure to prevent transactions linked to terrorist groups, including Hamas.

In response to these revelations, she noted Congress members introduced legislation to address loopholes in anti-money laundering frameworks exploited by bad actors in the crypto sphere.

However, she claims the crypto industry’s response appears focused on resisting new regulations.

Furthermore, it claims its tactic has been leveraging former government officials. Additionally, it alleges that Coinbase and the Blockchain Association showcased figures like former Defense Secretary Mark Esper and counterterrorism adviser Frances Townsend.

US Crypto Survey. Source: World Economic Forum

Read more: Crypto Regulation: What Are the Benefits and Drawbacks?

Warren Demands Answers From Crypto Associations

This revolving door between the government and the crypto industry raises ethical concerns.

Warren states it shows a gap in the nation’s ethics laws. Former officials transitioning to lobbying roles immediately after public service undermines the public’s confidence in government integrity.

Senator Warren claims to be calling for transparency and accountability.

She is demanding answers from crypto associations regarding the employment and compensation of former officials. Additionally, their roles and their involvement in legislative and regulatory activities.

Meanwhile, she seeks information on any contacts made with these officials while still in government service. This also includes whether the associations have a code of ethics governing such interactions.

Read more: How Does Regulation Impact Crypto Marketing? A Complete Guide

Top crypto platforms | December 2023

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