US Senator Cynthia Lummis does not support President Biden’s plan to impose a 30 percent tax on cryptocurrency miners. Lummis, who is a Republican from Wyoming and a fan of cryptocurrencies, expressed her opposition during the Bitcoin 2023 Conference in Miami. She highlighted the environmental advantages of mining cryptocurrencies, such as reducing gas emissions and providing grid stability.
What’s the tax?
In March, the Biden Administration included a proposal called the Digital Asset Mining Energy excise tax (DAME) in its budget for fiscal year 2024. This proposal suggests that companies involved in cryptocurrency mining would have to pay a tax equivalent to 30 percent of their electricity expenses. The tax would be introduced starting from next year and would be gradually implemented over three years, increasing by 10 percent each year. The goal is to reach the intended tax rate of 30 percent by the end of 2026, as reported by previous cryptocurrency news sources.
Lummis discussed her collaborative effort with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a Democrat from New York, on a bill called the Responsible Innovation Act, which was introduced last year and aims to establish comprehensive regulations for cryptocurrencies. Lummis announced at the conference that the bill will be reintroduced in the upcoming month with certain modifications, including the inclusion of additional measures for consumer protection.
In order to ensure the bill’s passage, Lummis and Gillibrand, along with House Financial Services Committee Chair Patrick T. McHenry, a Republican from North Carolina, and Maxine Waters, a Democrat from California, are exploring the possibility of dividing the bill into different committees for review.
During a recent hearing, House Democrats and Republicans on the House Financial Services Committee seemed to have differing opinions on the regulation of stablecoins. Chair McHenry and former committee chair Rep. Waters collaborated on a bill last year, but two separate stablecoin bills emerged prior to the hearing.
Lummis explained that the likely sequence of events would involve the House passing a stablecoin bill first, followed by the introduction of the Lummis-Gillibrand bill in the Senate, which will maintain its comprehensive nature.
When asked if she was waiting for the stablecoin bill to progress in the House before introducing her own bill, Lummis clarified that she was not.