Wyoming bitcoin evangelist Sen. Lummis wants to block Powell and Brainard's nominations to the Fed over their 'political approach' to crypto

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Wyoming bitcoin evangelist Sen. Lummis wants to block Powell and Brainard's nominations to the Fed over their 'political approach' to crypto
Sen. Cynthia Lummis.Tom Williams / Getty Images
  • Sen. Cynthia Lummis said the nominations of Jerome Powell and Lael Brainard to the Fed stand in the way of crypto adoption.
  • The Republican from Wyoming has told others to block the nominations, Decrypt reported.

Cynthia Lummis, the Republican senator from Wyoming, said the nominations of Jerome Powell and Lael Brainard to the Federal Reserve stand in the way of crypto adoption.

Powell was nominated last week for another term as Fed chair, with his current term set to expire in February. Brainard, a Fed governor, was nominated to serve as vice chair.

But in a Tuesday op-ed in the Wall Street Journal, Lummis said, "Unfortunately, over the past year my faith in the Fed has been deeply shaken by its political approach to digital assets in my home state, Wyoming, greatly contributing to my concerns over President Biden's nominees, Jay Powell and Lael Brainard."

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She has been encouraging senators to block Powell and Brainard's Fed nominations, Decrypt reported, citing a source in Lummis' office. But the chair of the Senate Banking Committee, Democrat Sherrod Brown of Ohio, wants to move quickly on confirming the nominees, according to Bloomberg.

In Wyoming — where multiple crypto-friendly state laws have been passed — crypto banks called Special Purpose Depository Institutions are in limbo as they wait for the Federal Reserve to process their applications, Lummis wrote, noting Kraken and Avanti received their bank charters in the state in 2020.

"While Mr. Powell and Ms. Brainard have said they want to promote responsible financial innovation, when Wyoming provided a perfect opportunity the Fed instead inexplicably chose to ignore its legal obligations," she said, adding that they should address the delay before Congress.

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Lummis and the Federal Reserve did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment. Lummis is a well-known crypto advocate in Congress. In August, she bought at least $50,000 worth of bitcoin when it slumped, and her campaign accepted bitcoin contributions.

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