On Aug. 20, Representative Tom Emmer (R-MN) held the first ever Cryptocurrency Town Hall, bringing together a number of leaders from the Blockchain space.
Conducted in collaboration with the Chamber of Digital Commerce PAC, the event featured major crypto figures like Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire, Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse, eToro’s Guy Hirsch, BitPay’s CEO Stephen Pair, and Paxos’ Chad Cascarilla.
Ripple CEO Garlinghouse outlined that the biggest challenge faced by Ripple so far is the lack of clarity around the regulatory status of XRP. “The biggest challenge Ripple has faced and anyone developing in the XRP community has faced is the lack of clarity on how assets beyond Bitcoin and Ether are gonna be defined by the SEC.” Garlinghouse continued that the absence of that regulatory framework “restricts innovation.”
Garlinghouse’s remarks come amid the long-running regulatory uncertainty around XRP. In the past, this uncertainty escalated into multiple lawsuits, alleging that XRP is an unregistered security. Though first brought up in 2018, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commision, or SEC, has not provided a firm stance on the matter to date.
Addressing the issue at the Cryptocurrency Town Hall, Emmer delivered his own verdict:
“My position is very clear. XRP is not a security.”
Emmer went on to say that U.S. authorities risk local businesses fleeing outside of the U.S. if the government continues to kill innovation.
The Congressman is not alone in his stance on XRP. In June 2020, Former Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chairman Chris Giancarlo also said that, according to the Howey Test, XRP does not meet the criteria to be considered a security.
During the event, Emmer also announced that the Congressman is now accepting donations in crypto for his campaign. According to the recorded event, Emmer’s campaign will be using the crypto payment firm BitPay to process those payments. Earlier today, a “Donate in Crypto” section was added to Emmer’s official website.
Emmer delivered some Bitcoin-friendly remarks earlier this month in an interview with co-founder of Morgan Creek Digital Anthony Pompliano. The official said that Bitcoin “ain’t going away” and is “gonna get stronger” as the world comes out of the coronavirus-fueled financial crisis.