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Photo: Chesnot/Getty Images

Given Facebook's multitude of missteps and scandals over the past two years, it's no surprise that legislators are skeptical of the company's plans to launch a new cryptocurrency called Libra.

Why it matters: Facebook faces a host of legal and regulatory issues around the globe amid concerns over privacy, data sharing and money laundering.

  • For his part, David Marcus, the Facebook executive leading its Libra efforts, acknowledged "serious legitimate concerns" and committed to "do what it takes to address these concerns," according to The Hill.
  • "And if those concerns are not addressed, and if the regulatory oversight is not appropriate, then we will not launch until it is," Marcus said.

Details: Members of the Senate Banking Committee piled on their concerns, expressed particularly strongly by Sen. Sherrod Brown:

“They moved fast and broke our political discourse. They moved fast and broke journalism. They moved fast and helped incite a genocide. They moved fast and they’re helping to undermine our democracy. Now Facebook asks people to trust them with their hard-earned paychecks."
— Sen. Sherrod Brown
  • For a company to have Facebook's track record and look to become its own currency issuer, Brown said, "takes a breathtaking amount of arrogance."

Meanwhile, CNBC reports that the Swiss regulator Marcus said will oversee Libra has yet to hear from the currency's backers.

Go deeper: Facebook spoils the cryptocurrency party

Go deeper

Ro Khanna wary of Biden approach on Middle East

Rep. Ro Khanna. Photo: Cody Glenn/Sportsfile for Web Summit via Getty Images

An outspoken progressive Democrat is wary of President Biden’s approach to the Middle East, arguing it’s like “conceding defeat of the aspiration” to win a Nobel Peace Prize.

Why it matters: A number of members of Biden’s own party dislike his Middle East strategy, as his administration signals the region is no longer the priority it was for President Obama and his predecessors.

Democrats eye reconciliation for immigration

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Comprehensive immigration reform is a pipe dream, but some Senate Democrats are hoping to tie key immigration provisions to the next big reconciliation push.

Why it matters: Immigration is one of the most controversial and partisan issues in U.S. politics, which is why the budget reconciliation process — which allows for bills to pass the Senate with a simple majority rather than the usual 60 votes — is so attractive.

3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Biden meeting Quad amid own pivot toward Asia

Artists paint portraits of President Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris in Mumbai, India. Photo: Anshuman Poyrekar/Hindustan Times via Getty Images

President Biden plans to meet this month with the leaders of Japan, Australia and India in a virtual summit of the so-called Quad, according to people familiar with the matter.

Why it matters: By putting a Quad meeting on the president’s schedule, the White House is signaling the importance of partnerships and alliances to counter China’s growing influence in the Indo-Pacific region.

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