Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) during a congressional hearing on Wednesday offered a brutal assessment of Facebook's cryptocurrency Libra, suggesting it will make the company more dangerous to the United States than Osama bin Laden.
Sherman spoke as members of the House Financial Services Committee questioned Facebook's David Marcus about the company's forthcoming cryptocurrency, Libra, which it announced last month.
"We're told by some that innovation is always good," Sherman said. "The most innovative thing that happened this century is when Osama bin Laden came up with the innovative idea of flying two airplanes into towers. That's the most consequential innovation, although this may do more to endanger America than even that."
Lawmakers hit Marcus with difficult questions throughout both Wednesday's hearing and a Tuesday hearing before the Senate Banking Committee, with Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) urging Facebook to stop its development of Libra because she has "serious concerns" that if it goes forward, the company will "wield immense economic power that could destabilize currencies and governments," CNN reports.
But Sherman went much further in the hearing, going on to call Libra a "godsend to drug dealers and sanctions evaders and tax evaders" and blast CEO Mark Zuckerberg as someone who "invades the privacy of ordinary Americans and sells it to the highest bidder."
Sherman also told Zuckerberg that "if cryptocurrency is used to finance the next horrific terrorist attack against Americans, 100 lawyers standing in a row, charging $2,000 an hour, are not going to protect his rear end from the wrath of the American people." Watch the congressman's comments below. Brendan Morrow