On the morning of Tuesday, May, 25, Republican Senator Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming and Democratic Senator Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona co-launched what they called the Financial Innovation Caucus.
In their announcement, they said that the Caucus’ primary purpose is to discuss policies that might improve US financial and economic competitiveness around the world. More specifically, the FIC plans to discuss and come up with and implement ways to achieve this objective by all kinds of new and innovative financial technologies.
It’s surprising to see a Republican and a Democrat agreeing on something — especially on something that is intended to be of benefit to America. But given that the Democrat in question here is Sen. Sinema, and given what her role has been in holding back the tide of some of the far-left’s worst excesses in the Senate, maybe this isn’t too surprising.
Keeping America at the Head of World Finance
In her statement on the matter, Sen. Lummis said, in part, “The United States is the world leader in the global financial system, but that position is a privilege, not a right.” In other words, given the tremendous financial innovations that have recently been made in the realm of finance using cryptocurrencies and blockchain-related technologies like smart contracts, Lummis recognizes that the US must stay abreast of this innovation and be prepared to add to it if it wants to stay ahead.
Lummis, by the way, is the first US Senator to own Bitcoin.
Sinema also said in her own statement that, “Two of my most important jobs are keeping America safe and secure and supporting Arizona job creation.
Boosting innovation in our financial system ensures the United States remains a global economic leader while expanding job opportunities in Arizona and across the country.”
The caucus plans to look into technologies like blockchains, AI, machine learning and central bank digital currencies in order to try and improve IS global financial competitiveness. The goal is to use these and other technologies to promote things like consumer protection, faster payments and greater access for more people to the financial system. Another goal is to more efficiently combat money laundering around the world.
The decision to launch this caucus comes right as the Chinese government is launching its own central bank digital currency, the digital yuan, and is doing trial runs to assess its functioning in Shenzhen and Chengdu.
Other Senators who have joined the caucus include Tim Scott (R-SC), Mike Braun (R-IN), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), and John Hickenlooper (D-CO).
They clearly see the moves being made by China as a threat and understand the need for the US to respond.