Photo of US Rep Patrick McHenry

US Rep. Patrick McHenry joins Jimmy Nguyen in Blockchain Policy Matters premiere episode

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Blockchain policy matters; what lawmakers believe and enforce in the blockchain and digital currency space has an impact on all of the participants in both industries.

In Bitcoin Association’s new show, Blockchain Policy Matters, Founding President Jimmy Nguyen will be talking to senior lawmakers about how they view blockchain technology—both now and in the future—as well as some of the legal obstacles and obligations that need to be addressed in the burgeoning blockchain and digital currency spaces.

In episode one of BPM, Nguyen is joined by U.S. Congressman Patrick McHenry, the representative for North Carolina’s 10th Congressional District, and the Republican Leader of the House Financial Services Committee for the 116th and 117th Congress.

During their conversation, Nguyen and McHenry discuss the opportunities that fintech presents, how policymakers should approach blockchain and digital currency, how to balance AML and KYC, use cases for blockchain on the state and federal level, microtransactions and what they can do for the world, and much more.

“It’s very difficult to conceive of what [blockchain technology and digital currency can enable] 10, 20, 30, 40 years down the line,” McHenry said.

“The first layer here, is to actually monetize the internet, and to make the internet, truly the internet of money. Bitcoin is that layer that will enable us to take the exchange of data, and actually have an exchange of data for some value. I think it’s a huge opportunity to connect data and some tradable value—the whole layer that builds thereafter is sort of beyond my capacity as a thinker, I’ll leave that to the deeper thinkers in the space.”

Nguyen’s discussion with McHenry is refreshing, because we don’t usually get to see the industry from a congressman’s perspective. We are much more used to hearing about the industry from the view of software developers and businessmen in the space. But lawmakers are a significant part of the industry and they are playing a bigger and bigger role in the industry as blockchain and digital currency become more popular.

“At the state level, we’ve seen various different types of adoption of distributed ledger technology and an acceptance of cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin. I think that will eventually percolate up into policymakers better understanding it in Washington,” McHenry said.

“We need to make sure that we drive that understanding and education of the benefits, and the needed and necessary changes to regulation and laws so that we can have further adoption of this technology here in the United States.”

Beyond McHenry’s unique perspective, he has a deep understanding of financial technologies like blockchain and digital currency and is very keen on the opportunities that they create in the world. 

“Education has to be the primary driver here. Most policymakers are not informed about the basics of cryptocurrency, the basics of blockchain technology – just the basics, so we need that base level of education to rise and then we can build off that platform,” McHenry said.

To learn more about the potential of blockchain technology and digital currency, as well as how one lawmaker is currently viewing and approaching the industry, then you are going to want to watch episode one of Jimmy Nguyen’s Blockchain Policy Matters.

You can find episode one, “Blockchain Policy Matters: U.S. Congressman Patrick McHenry (R-NC 10)” on the Bitcoin Association YouTube channel.

New to blockchain? Check out CoinGeek’s Blockchain for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about blockchain technology.