Congress Reintroduces Anti-CBDC Legislation

Representative Tom Emmer (R-MN), along with 49 co-sponsors, reintroduced the “CBDC Anti-Surveillance State Act” in the House of Representatives on September 12.

This legislation, first proposed by Emmer in January 2022 and formally introduced to Congress in February 2023, is designed to prevent the Federal Reserve from issuing a central bank digital currency (CBDC). The aim is to protect Americans’ right to financial privacy, which Emmer claims would be compromised by a surveillance-style CBDC.

In a statement, Emmer said, “The administration has made it clear: President Biden is willing to compromise the American people’s right to financial privacy for a surveillance-style CBDC. That’s why I’m reintroducing my landmark legislation to put a check on unelected bureaucrats and ensure the United States’ digital currency policy upholds our values of privacy, individual sovereignty, and free-market competitiveness.”

Emmer argues that a programmable digital dollar, minted by the Federal Reserve, would be a surveillance tool used to undermine the American way of life. The bill specifically prohibits the Fed from issuing a CBDC to individuals, preventing it from becoming a retail bank capable of collecting personal financial data. Moreover, the central bank is prohibited from using any CBDC to implement monetary policy.

In March, Emmer warned against the weaponization of money as the federal government seeks to maintain and expand financial control. U.S. presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. echoed this sentiment in May, stating, “That is why I oppose CBDCs, which will vastly magnify the government’s power to suffocate dissent by cutting off access to funds with a keystroke.”

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Jack McPherrin ([email protected]) is a managing editor of, research editor for The Heartland Institute, and a research fellow for Heartland's Socialism Research Center. He holds an MA in International Affairs from Loyola University-Chicago, and a dual BA in Economics and History from Boston College.