Former President Donald Trump called Bitcoin a “scam” in an interview with Stuart Varney on Fox Business Network. When asked his opinion on the cryptocurrency Trump stated that the “Bitcoin, it just seems like a scam” and “I don’t like it because it’s another currency competing against the dollar.”
In the interview, Trump called on authorities to regulate the cryptocurrency and stated that he did not like Bitcoin because “it’s another currency that competes against the dollar,” adding that “I want the dollar to be the currency of the world.”
This is not the first time Trump has referred pejoratively against Bitcoin. In fact, in 2020, the then-president said on his now-banned Twitter account that he wasn’t “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,” Trump added.
It is worth noting that unlike his past comments, where he denied the status of cryptocurrencies as currencies, this time Trump referred to Bitcoin as a currency competing with the dollar for its hegemony as an international currency, which shows, while not a change of stance, a change of discourse towards cryptocurrency.
According to former National Security Advisor John Bolton, Trump always frowned upon Bitcoin and incited former Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to go after Bitcoin.
The final days of the Trump administration saw the Treasury Department announce a series of regulations forcing crypto exchanges to disclose the identity of their users and counterparties who use hostless wallets and make transactions over $3,000 in cryptocurrencies.
Hostless wallets occur when financial institutions do not directly manage a user’s deposit account, but the user has the key (code) to make financial movements without the intermediation of the financial institution, which in this case only provides the digital platform to deposit the money, but does not approve or control such transactions.
For the Biden administration, Bitcoin is also a “scam”
The Treasury Department under the Biden administration has not relaxed the measures adopted during Mnuchin’s time as secretary. Current Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, seems to keep the skepticism of her predecessor and refers to Bitcoin as an “extremely inefficient” asset and also highly used for “illicit finance.”
In a recent interview, former Congressman Ron Paul warned that authorities would try to regulate Bitcoin because of its competition with the dollar.
Despite Ron Paul’s warnings, not all officials seem so antagonistic towards Bitcoin. Jerome Powell, the Federal Reserve (FED) chairman holds a more open and optimistic attitude towards Bitcoin than his counterparts at the Treasury. The FED chairman has repeatedly referred to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as part of the new digital economy and argues that central banks will have to find mechanisms to integrate them into the economy and control their volatility.
Although nothing is set in stone, that leading figures in both the Democratic and Republican parties have an antipathy towards Bitcoin augurs that cryptocurrencies are increasingly in the crosshairs of bureaucrats in Washington.