Trump Picks Cryptocurrency and Blockchain
Advocate as Budget Chief
Bitcoin Caucus co-founder Mick Mulvaney is the US'
next Director of Office of Management and Budget.
It seems the election of Donald Trump could spell great news for American blockchain startups and cryptocurrency users. President-elect Trump has added to his cabinet an active and vocal supporter of cryptocurrencies and blockchain which means that there will be at least one powerful voice in the US government that will resist further efforts to legislate the technology into oblivion.
Trump picked Congressman Mick Mulvaney, Tea Party Republican, as his administration’s Director of Office of Management and Budget. He is considered a staunch fiscal conservative that wishes to drastically limit the federal government’s spending on social programs.
Just this September he was among the founders of the bipartisan Blockchain Caucus. Commonly called the Bitcoin Caucus by American media, it is meant to help congressmen stay up to speed on cryptocurrency and blockchain technologies, and develop policies that advance them.
“Blockchain technology has the potential to revolutionize the financial services industry, the U.S. economy and the delivery of government services, and I am proud to be involved with this initiative,” Mulvaney said in a statement back then.
Mulvaney is also a supporter of Coin Center, a non-profit research and advocacy center focused on public policy issues facing cryptocurrency technologies, which raised over $1 million earlier this year.
“For the past two years we have worked with Representatives Mulvaney and Polis to educate their colleagues through briefings and other events, and the new Congressional Blockchain Caucus will be a wonderful new platform to continue these efforts,” Jerry Brito, executive director of Coin Center said at the time. “Their forward-thinking leadership on blockchain technology in Congress is unmatched.”
Blockchain opens 10 millionth bitcoin wallet after Brexit and Trump boost
London-based bitcoin wallet provider Blockchain has opened its 10 millionth digital wallet.
It comes almost two weeks after the company's cofounder and CEO Peter Smith told Business Insider the company would "pretty easily" have its biggest ever month for activity in November, following a surge in use after Donald Trump's shock election victory in the US.
He told BI shortly after the election: "People are basically hedging against economic instability. It's a worrying time to be holding a lot of British pound or if you're America — people flee to safe haven assets. Bitcoin is one of those."
Smith says in an emailed statement on Wednesday: "Hitting this milestone at this particular moment isn’t a coincidence. In the wake of the Brexit vote, the US Presidential election and a weakening Yuan, we have seen unprecedented levels of activity and transaction on our platform, which further suggests that people are embracing the need for a more globally accessible currency system, and one that does not exclude over one-third of the world’s population.
"We are excited to play such an important role in powering the world’s shift to a more open, fair and accessible financial system."
Blockchain lets people download software onto their computer that lets them open a digital wallet to store cryptocurrency bitcoin. The wallet, which lets people store their own bitcoin rather than hold it with Blockchain, can also be used to pay for things using bitcoin.
Blockchain employs around 25 people in London but also has offices in Luxembourg and New York. The company is the world's biggest provider of digital wallets for bitcoin, with over 50% market share, and processes over 150,000 transactions a day on average. It has raised over $30 million (£23.9 million) to date.