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Texas legislators voted by a wide margin to amend the state’s Bill of Rights and add a provision recognizing the right of individuals to own, hold and use digital currencies. The decision was made on Wednesday, May 10.
HJR 146, introduced by State Representative Giovani Capriglione, declares that individuals have the right to use a mutually agreed medium of exchange, including digital currencies, cash, coins, bullion or securities, to trade and contract for goods and services, and that this right cannot be violated.
The document received up to 139 votes in favor and only two against, and it includes a statement that “no government shall forbid or discourage the possession or possession of any form or amount of money or other currency.”
The Texas Bill of Rights guarantees fundamental freedoms such as freedom of speech, religion, and the press, similar to the US Bill of Rights. However, it also includes specific provisions relating to Texas, such as the right to a speedy trial and the right to keep and bear arms in self-defense.
If it passes and becomes law, the recent amendment will additionally give Texans the privilege of using digital currencies such as bitcoin (BTC). Tom Glass, who created the Texas Constitution Enforcement Panel, noted on Thursday, May 11 that there is another vote in the House of Representatives on HJR 146, and then it goes to the Senate and the vote of the people.
Objective of adding this to the Texas Bill of Rights is to make a case in the federal judiciary to invoke the 9th Amendment to the US Constitution which says that there are other natural rights besides those in the first 8 amendments. If Texas recognizes, the feds should under…
— Tom Glass (@tomgglass) May 11, 2023
In his explanation of the bill, Glass stated that its purpose is to use the inclusion of the right to own, hold, and use digital currencies in the Texas Bill of Rights to make a legal argument in the federal court system. This argument refers to the 9th Amendment to the US Constitution, which recognizes the existence of natural rights beyond those expressly listed in the first eight amendments.
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According to the Texas Constitution Enforcement Group, the inclusion of digital currencies in the Texas Bill of Rights is critical to protecting Texans’ financial privacy. They said the use of alternative currencies was necessary to protect the hard-won wealth that Texans had amassed from being destroyed by the unstable dollar. The group also emphasized that Texans should not be forced to rely solely on the services of the global financial elite, as this would expose all of their financial assets to the risk of devaluation and confiscation.