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Ripple Co-Founder Slams ”Power Hungry” SEC Chair Gary Gensler For ”Bullying” Crypto Firms, Losing Blockchain Industry

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Ripple Labs' co-founder Chris Larsen
Ripple Labs' co-founder Chris Larsen

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Ripple Labs’ co-founder Chris Larsen slammed ”power hungry” Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) chair Gary Gensler for ”bullying” the crypto industry and losing the blockchain industry to foreign competitors.

Larsen made the remarks in an interview with Bloomberg Television on Sept. 6 and also said that the Biden administration has ”’screwed up” the nation’s crypto policy, losing the blockchain industry to offshore crypto hubs including London, Dubai and Singapore.

Gensler is pursuing a regulation by enforcement strategy, rather than pressing lawmakers for clearer regulations, because he ”likes that lack of clarity so that he can go after anybody and make up the rules as he goes along through bullying,” he told Bloobmerg. “And that’s not the American way.“

San Francisco was set to become the blockchain capital of the world but it lost the chance because of the US’s hostile policy toward crypto, he said in the interview.

“They pretty much killed San Francisco from being what it was,” he said. “ We owned it and we don’t anymore because the Biden administration, for whatever reason, decided they want to push this industry offshore.”

He said London, Singapore and Dubai are now bigger hubs for blockchain than the US because the Biden government ”screwed up” its crypto policy.

San Francisco’s office vacancy rate may be half what it is now at about 30% if the blockchain industry hadn’t been lost, he added.

The SEC’s crackdown on crypto companies this year has prompted a strong reaction from the industry, as well as politicians including Ritchie Torres, who said the SEC is an ”overzealous traffic cop” conducting a ”crusade” against the industry.

Opponents argue that Gensler’s regulation-by-enforcement strategy is damaging a high-growth industry by forcing companies to move jobs overseas and stifling innovation. Others say a crackdown is needed to root out bad actors to establish stronger foundations for future growth.

Ripple Won Landmark Partial Legal Victory Against SEC

Gensler’s had setbacks recently with a partial legal loss against Ripple itself in one lawsuit and then last week when Grayscale Investments triumphed over the regulator in another landmark ruling.

“I sincerely hope we’re seeing the beginning of the end of the SEC’s policy of regulation by enforcement,” Larsen tweeted after the Bloomberg interview. “The courts are rejecting it, and now it’s time for Congress to take the lead on crypto policy.”

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