On September 27, United States Representative Tom Emmer opposed the head of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Gary Gensler, during a hearing at the House Financial Services Committee. According to the lawmaker, Gensler has been loyal to Wall Street “at the expense of innovation, competition, and everyday Americans.”
During four minutes of questioning, Emmer made several allusions to Gensler’s background in finance, which included 18 years as a partner and co- head of finance at Goldman Sachs. Emmer believes that Gensler’s connections to the financial sector prevent him from acting as an unbiased regulator.
He said, “But given your 18-year career at one of the biggest banks in the world and the personal financial fortune you amassed there, do you think it’s possible for you to serve as an impartial regulator and not favor large financial intermediaries?”
Emmer also added, “And to be clear sir, this perspective has nothing to do with a concern you noted in a speech last year where you said, quote, ‘Over the past year, several bank executives have shared their concerns with me about the sheer number of depositors who have moved money from their bank accounts into crypto-related exchanges and wallets,’ end quote, right?”
Gensler is only permitted to provide a simple yes or no response to each question that is posed to him. Gensler replied, “Absolutely, sir,” in response to the first question regarding the ability to regulate impartially. Gensler attempted to contextualize his quote in response to the second question, but he was unable to do so.
In the hearing, Representative Patrick McHenry hinted at the possibility of issuing a subpoena to the SEC for documents concerning former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried.