A list has been created to distinguish the Santa clauses and Grinch in the crypto world for the year 2021.
2021 is a big year for the crypto industry. A few years ago, our elected officials might not have heard of, much less had an opinion about, cryptocurrencies. This year, however, crypto seems to be a hot topic for everyone around the world.
Here is a list of the most vocal crypto defenders and critics from parliaments and white houses around the world.
Santa Claus: Francis Suarez
The first cryptocurrency for Santa Claus was the Mayor of Miami, Francis Suarez. MiamiCoin City (MIA) was launched in August. The revenue from the tokens will be used to fund public projects in the city. Mayor Suarez said in a November interview that any Miami resident with a digital wallet could immediately qualify for a Bitcoin (BTC) dividend on MiamiCoin profitability.
In February, Suarez announced that it would pass the "most advanced crypto law" in the United States. To be precise, this year's Bitcoin conference was held in Miami, attracting the largest crowd in the history of the annual event and cementing the city's position as a thriving cryptocurrency hub.
Grinch: Narendra Modi
The first Grinch to steal the mass of crypto was Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. On November 18, he called on all democracies to work together in regulating cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin in particular, to "ensure they don't fall into the wrong hands, which could harm our young generation." He also shared concerns that if not regulated, cryptocurrencies could become a route for "money laundering and terrorist financing".
On November 23, the Indian government submitted a bill to ban “all private cryptocurrencies”, which has led to mass sales in the country. Since then, the bill's creator, former finance minister Subhash Garg, has dismissed the ban on "private cryptocurrencies" as a misinterpretation.
Modi's account was hacked in mid-December with a tweet claiming the country had officially adopted Bitcoin. The hacker's tweet read: “India has officially introduced Bitcoin as a legal tender. The government officially buys 500 BTC and distributes it to all residents of the country. The future has come today!"
Santa Claus: President Nayib Bukele
Of course, this list would not be complete without Salvador's only president, Naib Bukele. In June, El Salvador passed President Bukele's Bitcoin law, making BTC the country's official means of payment. A series of protests erupted as citizens fear their savings and pensions are at risk, but merchants still accept bitcoin as legal payment.
Since then, the Latin American country has not delayed the introduction of cryptocurrencies and plans to build 200 ATMs and 50 branches that can convert BTC into USD. The country is slowly expanding its BTC reserves and plans to make Bitcoin City a full-scale communal project with residential areas, shopping malls, restaurants, and a port, all of which will focus on Bitcoin adoption.
Grinch: Elizabeth Warren
The next anti-crypto Grinch was Senator Elizabeth Warren, who proved that cryptocurrencies are not really a party thing. At a June Senate Banking Committee meeting, Warren described crypto as “an alternative to a fourth real currency exchange rate,” adding that it is a “bad investment” because of “no consumer protection.”
The anti-crypto rhetoric hasn't stopped there, and the Massachusetts Senator said in a September interview with the New York Times that banning US banks from holding reserves is worth considering keeping stable coins private. He also shyly referred to the cryptocurrency industry as the “new shadow bank”. Just days later, he sued the Ethereum network in a Senate committee hearing with Gary Gensler. He said, “Unpredictably high fees can make crypto trading very dangerous for people who are not rich.”
Santa Claus: Andrew Bragg
Speaking of pro-crypto politicians, Australian Liberal Senator from NSW Andrew Bragg is hard to miss. Over the past year, he has been a staunch defender of cryptocurrencies and digital assets in Australia. As chair of the Australian Senate Committee on technology and finance, Bragg oversaw the publication of the Australian "Crypto Report" in October.
The report includes 12 recommendations to address key issues related to the cryptocurrency sector, including tax breaks on cryptocurrencies that use renewable energy, new cryptocurrency licenses, revised capital gains tax in decentralized finance, and new governance laws. . He also spoke out against Australian banks which he said had "anti-competitive behavior" such as complying with regulatory requirements and banning crypto customers.
Grinch: Xi Jinping
It can be said that Chinese President Xi Jinping himself played the most influential global role in cryptocurrency this year. Xi has spoken many times about the benefits of blockchain technology, and his administration is in the process of introducing a digital currency at the Central Bank of Yuan (CBDC). However, over the past year, his government has taken some significant steps to curb the use of cryptocurrencies in the country. In June, Chinese regulators banned cryptocurrency mining in the country, forcing miners to move overseas. In late September, the communist state went a step further and banned cryptocurrencies in the country.
Santa Claus: Mayor Elect Eric Adams
Another pro-crypto mayor in the United States who will do so is Eric Adams of New York. That year we saw a friendly rivalry between him and Miami Mayor Frans Suarez over who is the bigger defender of cryptocurrency than the mayor.
When Bitcoin podcaster Anthony Pompliano tweeted who would be the first American politician to receive his Bitcoin salary in early November, Miami Mayor Francis said he plans to take his next Bitcoin salary. To avoid being overtaken, Adams looked at his partner and said, "We've always grown up in New York, so I'll take my first THREE paychecks in Bitcoin when I become Mayor."
He also said he plans to make New York a "Center of the cryptocurrency industry" after taking office in January. Since then, Adams has been busy launching NewYorkCityCoin (NYCCoin) and has even outlined plans to add crypto to the curriculum.
The Grinch: Brad Sherman
Who could forget anti-cryptocurrency Congressman Brad Sherman on the House Financial Services Committee earlier this month? To illustrate how easily different cryptocurrencies can knock each other down, he asked: “What can Mongoose Coin do with Crypto Coin? Sherman has been the US representative for California's 30th Congressional District since 2013 and has been against crypto for nearly that long. As previously reported, Sherman reportedly received more than $100,000 in campaign contributions from leading financial firms.
Santa Claus: Matt West
Another pro-crypto politician to make a splash this year is Democratic nominee Matt West, though he may have slightly more personal connections to the industry. West spent his days fighting for the upcoming May 2022 Democratic Party primaries in Oregon's 6th Congressional District. By night he is a decentralized financial (DeFi) strategist for Yearn finance. While his platform is largely on par with Democrats in Congress on other issues such as the environment and healthcare, he has been very open about the benefits of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies. In a November interview, West said cryptocurrencies shouldn't be a party thing. It's too big for that."