Five US senators, led by Senator Ted Cruz, have introduced a bill aiming to prohibit the Federal Reserve from issuing a central bank digital currency (CBDC). This legislation, titled the “CBDC Anti-Surveillance State Act,” reflects concerns about potential government overreach and privacy violations associated with a digital dollar.

The senators, including Bill Hagerty, Rick Scott, Ted Budd, and Mike Braun, argue that a CBDC could be used for extensive surveillance of citizens’ spending habits and potentially even restrict access to funds. Senator Cruz emphasizes the dangers of “government-controlled programmable money” collecting personal data and enabling the freezing of funds.

The bill explicitly challenges the Federal Reserve’s authority to implement a CBDC. It proposes legislation from Congress as a prerequisite for any future issuance of such a digital currency, further ensuring the Federal Reserve remains a central bank and not a retail bank.

This move has received support from various organizations, including Heritage Action for America, the Blockchain Association, the American Bankers Association, and others. Additionally, former President Donald Trump has publicly declared his opposition to a CBDC, promising to never allow its creation if re-elected.

With the introduction of this bill, the debate surrounding a potential digital dollar in the US intensifies. The coming months will likely see further discussions and potential revisions to the proposed legislation as the implications of a CBDC are carefully considered.