On Monday, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis introduced new legislation that would see central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) banned from the state. According to DeSantis, the move was taken in an effort to safeguard the financial privacy of Floridians.
While introducing the legislation, DeSantis claimed that the Fed’s yet-to-be-launched CBDC was all about surveilling the United States citizens and controlling them. He added that accepting the creation of such a currency would mean giving the central bank a huge amount of power, which it could use against the Americans.
CBDCs closely resemble stablecoins since they’re both pegged to prices of sovereign currencies like USD. However, stablecoins are issued and maintained by private entities, while CBDCs are only issued by a country’s central bank.
The Fed’s CBDC Plans
The Federal Reserve has been exploring the idea of developing its own CBDC since 2017, and the institution has insisted that it would only launch one once it gets Congress’ approval.
A group of analysts has said a CBDC will promote financial inclusion by banking the unbanking. On the other hand, critics have been against the currency on the grounds that it expands government control and makes financial surveillance possible.
Florida Governor Calls Out President Biden
With DeSantis being among the critics, he recently called out President Joe Biden for issuing a crypto executive order last year that required all government agencies to align themselves with the crypto roadmap. The order also contained a section with the title “Exploring the US CBDC.”
The governor has urged other states to adopt similar legislation restricting CBDCs. He added that he is certain Texas will follow suit, considering the positive conversations he has had with the state’s lieutenant governor Dan Patrick.
But DeSantis is not the only politician to disapprove of a US CBDC. Last month, the Republican House Representative Tom Emmer reintroduced a bill restricting the US central bank’s ability to issue a CBDC to United States Residents directly. In the first week of March, Emmer said a CBDC is likely to undermine the financial privacy of Americans. He was speaking at a conference held at Cato Institute.