There are other options to change the rules
The bipartisan infrastructure bill will likely pass controversial new cryptocurrency tax requirements. The cryptocurrency community rallied to fix the language. Still, the House voted to proceed with the account as is on Tuesday, moving forward without any new amendments or opportunities to change it.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.CA) and moderate Democrats came to a compromise on Tuesday. They agreed to approve a $3.5 trillion budget resolution and schedule action for the September 27th floor. The agreement is now in place after a group of moderate Democrats promised to vote down the multitrillion-dollar social safety net package if it was passed before the bipartisan infrastructure bill.
“WE’RE NOT SURPRISED, BUT DISAPPOINTED”
The deal prohibits any amendments to the infrastructure package from being considered unless the House approves a rule that would allow them.
This deal is a major blow to cryptocurrency communities that have spent weeks getting rid of language in the infrastructure package that could make it more difficult for miners and wallet developers to report tax obligations. The Senate rejected several amendments earlier in the month. This left the bill with inappropriate language.
“We are disappointed, but not surprised,” Neeraj, the Coin Center communications director, stated to The Verge. It was always a long shot. Nevertheless, there are opportunities in the next months to fix this legislation.
Several House members, including Reps. Ro Khanna and Anna Eshoo (D-CA) voted against the bill’s broad definition. The bipartisan Congressional Blockchain Caucus wrote to Congress asking for a fix.
However, cryptocurrency advocates might still be able to influence the way that the rules are applied. The Treasury Department has reportedly said that it would issue new guidance on the rules once they’re passed, ensuring that it would provide exemptions to firms that do not operate as brokers. It is not clear if Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will support industry-friendly regulations. In an interview with CNBC earlier this year, Yellen called Bitcoin an “extremely inefficient” asset.
She said, “It’s a highly speculative investment and you know I think people need to be aware that it can be extremely volatile. I worry about possible losses that investors could suffer.”
According to the Treasury Department, cryptocurrency advocates have been calmed by its assurance that it wouldn’t interpret “broker” as including miners and developers. Many cryptocurrency advocates believe that this promise is insufficient and that future administration may reinterpret its underlying definition wider.
“I appreciate that it seems to be Treasury’s intention to get this right, and we look forward to engaging in any regulatory process in the years to come,” Jerry Brito, Coin Center executive director, said in a tweet Wednesday. “But please do not accept the narrative that crypto people are reacting too strongly to this provision.”
According to The Wall Street Journal, as the House continues work on the infrastructure package, national security officers raise concerns that cryptocurrency language could make it harder for law enforcement to stop illicit cryptocurrency transactions. “More regulation could push illicit use and criminal actors further into anonymizing methods, corners of the internet, that would make law enforcement more difficult,” Jeremy Sheridan (US Secret Service investigations office assistant Director) told the Journal.