Donald Trump has been “after” bitcoin (BTC) for at least two years now, allegedly stating the world’s number one token is a fraud, per claims in a new tell-all book.
The United States President allegedly told Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to crack down on the trading and selling of BTC, claims an as-yet-unpublished book by former White House national security advisor John Bolton, called The Room Where it Happened – as reported by The Washington Examiner.
The newspaper says it has obtained a copy of the book, and says that Trump allegedly told Mnuchin in an exchange between the two men in 2018:
“Don’t be a trade negotiator. […] Go after bitcoin [for fraud].”
“If you don’t want me on trade, fine, your economic team will execute whatever you want,” Mnuchin reportedly replied, referring to a”tense exchange” over China-related trade sanctions and tariffs.
This would put it before the President’s tweets about the fact that he is not a crypto fan, made in July 2019. At the time, he took aim at bitcoin and Facebook’s Libra project, stating that the social network and other token issuers must “face global regulations” if they were set on “becoming banks.”
Since 2019, Mnuchin has also publicly spoken out against cryptocurrencies. “As the President has said, bitcoin is highly volatile and based on thin air,” he had said in July 2019.
“We are concerned about the speculative nature of Bitcoin and we’ll make sure that the US financial system is protected from fraud.”
Then in February this year, Mnuchin said, “We’re about to roll out some significant new requirements” at the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). He added that, while the administration wants the technology to move forward, “we want to make sure that cryptocurrencies aren’t used for the equivalent of old Swiss secret number bank accounts,” later suggesting crypto could also be used for money laundering.
The book release has hit a roadblock as the US Justice Department has filed a lawsuit against Bolton, asking a judge to stop its release, and claiming it contains classified data.
Learn more: Can Donald Trump Ban Bitcoin and Cryptocurrencies?
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