Announcing the "HODLpac 2022" Twitter Spaces Series
Also: moving forward after the infrastructure bill, crypto-lobbyists, and the Blockchain Caucus' Bitcoin ETF letter
Today is Tuesday, November 9, 2021. The 2022 general election date is Tuesday, November 8, 2022.
We’re excited to announce HODLpac’s weekly Twitter Spaces series, held every Tuesday from now until the election (with maybe a handful of weeks off for holidays, of course). We’ll be hosting candidates for Congress, crypto policy experts, and other interesting guests.
Tonight’s guest: Matt West, a DeFi developer running for Congress in Oregon’s 6th District.
Join us at 5pm PST/8pm EST if you’re free!
As always, three things you can do to get involved with HODLpac:
Subscribe and share our newsletter with your friends and colleagues
Join our Discord to help shape the future of HODLpac:
Donate to HODLpac, get governance tokens, and be a part of the first political DAO in history:
The Week in Crypto Policy
Moving Forward After the Infrastructure Bill
As we’ve discussed here at length, included in the bill are two provisions that are not great for crypto in the United States:
A nonsensically-written “pay-for” that unfairly defines software developers, DAOs, and miners as “brokers,” potentially exposing them to onerous (and unfeasible) IRS reporting requirements and undue legal liability.
“Toomey vows fix to 'badly flawed' cryptocurrency broker plan in infrastructure bill,” Jennifer Schonberger, Yahoo News
An amendment to tax code section 6050I that “requires certain “recipients” of digital assets valued over $10,000 to report the sender’s name, address, and Social Security number to the government.”
“DeFi and the “Digital Asset” Felony Hidden in the Infrastructure Bill,” Abraham Sutherland, DeCential
So, what happens next?
On the broker definition:
On the 6050I issue:
Jake Chervinsky @jchervinsky1/ The infrastructure bill is heading for a vote in the House. Yes, the crypto provisions are just as bad as they were months ago. Yes, the impact of Section 6050I has been underexplored. No, you don't need to call your reps. The political reality is: it's out of our hands now.
The role of PACs in the world of political advocacy is to use money as a political feedback loop for members of Congress. Remember: members of Congress exist to get re-elected. Sure, sometimes pieces of legislation and other initiatives are motivated by the personal beliefs of policymakers but everything comes back to their true north star: staying in power.
HODLpac, thus, has a job to do. We need to make sure we vote with our dollars and support those who are on our side.
However, it’s not as simple as donating to those who voted against this bill and to the opponents of those who voted for it. There were other factors in play here in this massive bill. Following such a simple strategy would mean, basically, only donating to Republicans… and we need Democrats on our side as well.
That’s why our HODLscore project is so important. We need to come up with strategies for sussing out where candidates and incumbents stand on crypto issues broadly.
For example, if legislation is introduced to specifically override these anti-crypto laws, then we should track exactly who is supporting that effort and donate to their reelection effort.
However, given Congress’ dysfunction, it is more likely that such a legislative fix would be included in another large bill that does something else, rather than a specific point solution. To increase the likelihood of something favorable to crypto being included in a future piece of legislation, a good strategy for HODLpac is to target our donations to members of the committees and subcommittees that it would come from, like the House Financial Services Committee and Senate Banking Committee.
Our job is cut out for us. We need to make our voices heard.
For now, donate to HODLpac and get friends, colleagues, bosses, and neighbors to give as well. Let’s build our war chest and make some noise in 2022.
Bitcoin ETF Letter
The Blockchain Caucus continues to represent the interests of the crypto industry in Congress. They deserve our support.
This week, Rep. Tom Emmer and Rep. Darren Soto sent a letter to the SEC asking for clarification as to why a Bitcoin spot ETF has not been allowed to trade by the SEC, while futures-based ETFs have been.
🗒️ ✍️ (← us taking notes)
Crypto in Congress - November 9, 2021
By Ron Hammond
Reinforcement are beginning to arrive in DC. The infrastructure bill was a major wakeup call for the crypto industry and many companies have rightfully invested in trade associations, outside consultants and in-house lobbyists. Like many industries, there are growing pains associated with this growth. Few observations:
The amount of firms hiring is staggering, but the talent pool is limited. To find people with government experience and understand crypto is tough. That is because it is a new issue in DC. There have been great hires though made by Consensys, Stellar, Coinbase, Square and DeFi Education Fund. The old saying goes “rising tides lift all boats” and the good lobbyists regularly coordinate with one another and make sure the industry has the best strategy to reach success. This sort of coordination is the reason why the industry was able to mount such a fight with limited resources during the infrastructure fight.
On the other hand, we are starting to see some folks who are new to the DC scene try to get in for a quick buck or clout on social media. Many staffers have lamented to me and CoinDesk about how this is hurting advocacy efforts. Another bad trend is companies and token projects attacking each other in DC. While many companies are competitors to each other in the marketplace, in DC we are all in this together. Attacking your competition in DC will only result in bad policy and a bad perception of the industry as a whole on the Hill.
To end on the positive note, there is a lot of excitement in DC regarding crypto. Young staffers and policymakers are keen to learn more and while many are skeptical, they are listening. It is important the image that groups like CoinCenter, Blockchain Association, and HODLpac have built in DC remain strong for years to come!
📚 Good Reads
“NFT games are fun. Filing taxes afterward is a nightmare,” Hirsh Chitkara, Protocol
“Senators respond to US stablecoin report, setting stage for coming debate,” Kollen Post, The Block
“US Stablecoin Report Gets Mixed Reviews From Crypto Industry,” Sandali Handagama, CoinDesk
“A Simple Proposal for Regulating Stablecoins,” Norbert Michel and Jennifer J. Schulp, Cato Institute
“Regulators Ask Congress to Create New Rules for Cryptocurrencies,” Ephrat Livni and Eric Lipton, New York Times
“Crypto Cities,” Vitalik Buterin, Vitalik.ca
“‘If you’re not at the table, you’re on the menu’ - About HODLpac,” Brad Nickel, Mission DeFi Podcast
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Disclaimer: HODLpac is FEC-registered hybrid political action committee and is not legally affiliated with any party, party committee, candidate or candidate committee.