At a time when the Securities and Exchange Commission has taken the lead on pushing for more regulation of cryptocurrencies, a bipartisan group of lawmakers is urging the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to play a bigger part in crypto oversight, according to news reports.
In a letter to the chairman of the CFTC, Democrats and Republicans on the Senate and House Agriculture Committees — which oversee the CFTC — wrote the agency has a “critical role to play” in policing crypto, Bloomberg reports.
The lawmakers, including Debbie Stabenow, the top Democrat of the Senate Agriculture Committee, and John Boozman, the top Republican on the committee, say that Bitcoin and Ether — the two largest cryptocurrencies — are commodities and therefore fall under the CFTC’s jurisdiction, according to the news service.
The letter comes as SEC chair Gary Gensler continues his aggressive push for a bigger role for his agency in regulating crypto, Bloomberg writes.
The CFTC took the lead on crypto regulation, but it’s seen as more friendly to digital assets than the SEC and is therefore more popular with industry executives, according to the news service. The CFTC allowed Bitcoin futures trading in 2017, Bloomberg writes.
Gensler has said that he views Bitcoin as a commodity not covered by securities rules but has declined to address the status of Ether, according to the news service.
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