US House of Representatives Passes Bipartisan Crypto Bill For The Second Time
The United States House of Representatives has passed a bipartisan bill that proposes the study of the use of blockchain technology and digital tokens.
Within a week of introduction, the bill passed the 117th Congress with a resounding 325 votes in favor of, and 103 votes against.
AI Program To Be Established Under The Bill
The bill called the Consumer Safety Technology Act is sponsored by Rep. Jerry McNerny (D-Calif.) and co-sponsored by Rep. Darren Soto (D-Fla.).
Under the bill, the Consumer Product Safety Commission would establish an artificial intelligence (AI) pilot program to explore use cases in commerce.
The program would aid consumer safety inspections, such as identifying consumer product hazards while also tracking trends related to injuries involving consumer products.
The bill had previously passed multiple stages in Congress. It had previously passed Consumer Safety Technology Act under the Donald Trump Administration. However, it was never approved by the Senate.
The Consumer Safety Technology Act also includes two other bills namely the Blockchain Innovation Act and parts of the Digital Taxonomy Act. These bills mandate the Secretary of Commerce and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to study and report on the use of blockchain technology and digital tokens.
Speaking on the bill, Rep. Soto said the Consumer Safety Technology Act is the first step towards creating a Blockchain Center of Excellence in the Department of Commerce.
He noted that emerging technologies like AI, crypto, and blockchain play an important role and are going to be an economic driver for the 21st-century economy. Soto said,
“It’s essential that the United States continue to be a global leader in these emerging technologies to ensure that our democratic values remain at the forefront of this technological development.”
US Congressional Hearings Surrounding Crypto
Regulators and lawmakers around the world have been paying closer attention to crypto in recent times.
US authorities have made attempts at providing regulatory clarity on ownership and management of digital assets over time.
This month has already seen two congressional hearings in the US focused on crypto. The House Fintech Task Force held a hearing last week Tuesday about the future of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs).
At this hearing, US Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) announced plans to form a group of Democratic House members to tackle concerns about cryptocurrency.
In a similar hearing held earlier this month, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) took a swipe at the crypto industry, referring to it as a “Wild West” in need of regulation.
Warren criticized the environmental cost of Bitcoin mining. According to her, Bitcoin uses as much energy as the Netherlands and could consume much more before the end of the year.