US Pres. Donald Trump Wanted to ‘Go After Bitcoin’ Long Before His Twitter Rant on Crypto
- New information emerging shows that U.S. President, Donald Trump looked at regulating crypto earlier before his backlash thread of tweets in 2019.
In a story that appears in former national security advisor, John Bolton’s upcoming book, “The Room Where It Happened”, Trump once ordered Treasury Secretary, Steven Mnuchin, to “go after Bitcoin (BTC)” in retaliation to the trade wars with China.
Washington Examiner, who received an early copy of the book, reports that Trump wanted to clamp down on trading and to exchange the top cryptocurrency in a heated debate with Mnuchin on the China-US trade wars. According to Bolton, Trump said to Mnuchin,
“Don’t be a trade negotiator. Go after Bitcoin [for fraud]”
This occurred in May of 2018 during the heat of the China-US trade wars. However, the courts have halted the release as the Justice Department filed a lawsuit against Bolton, claiming the book contains classified information.
Trump’s government against crypto
Since then, Trump has come out publicly bashing Bitcoin and associated cryptocurrencies saying he “is not a fan” calling for more regulation on these assets. He tweeted,
I am not a fan of Bitcoin and other Cryptocurrencies, which are not money, and whose value is highly volatile and based on thin air. Unregulated Crypto Assets can facilitate unlawful behavior, including drug trade and other illegal activity….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 12, 2019
Mnuchin has since come out strongly against BTC and the crypto industry, calling for tougher regulations in the field too. Earlier this year the Treasury Secretary said the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) will introduce new regulations to govern cryptocurrencies across the U.S.
A softer side to accepting digital assets
However, the government is not looking to do away with digital assets at all. Talks of a Federal Reserve digital dollar are gradually gaining steam in the corridors of the White House. Recently, Judy Shelton, an economic advisor to the president urged financial authorities to look into “important” discussions on the digital dollar.
Trump himself has made appointments of Bitcoin-friendly personnel to several committees including SEC commissioner, Hester Peirce, also known as crypto mom, for her second term.