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Mexican Senator Plans to Follow in El Salvador’s Footsteps by Legalizing Bitcoin

2 mins
Updated by Ryan James
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In Brief

  • Senator Indira Kempis has lauded El Salvador for being an open bitcoin experiment for the world to see.
  • She will start the process of making bitcoin legal tender in Mexico later this year.
  • She said that the bill submitted to the Salvadorean Congress will be the basis for her legal draft.
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A Mexican senator will fight for the unbanked, using her political standing to motivate bitcoin’s adoption as legal tender.

The Mexican Senator Indira Kempis will present a new crypto law to Congress this year based on the Salvadoran Congress equivalent.

In a recent visit to El Salvador, Senator Kempis of the state of Nuevo Leon witnessed the developing bitcoin ecosystem. She believes that El Salvador’s adoption of bitcoin as legal tender is a public experiment. She aims to help Mexico adopt the cryptocurrency as legal tender by proposing a new law to the Mexican Congress later this year. “We need bitcoin to be legal tender in Mexico because if it is not so if we do not make that decision as El Salvador did, it is very difficult to take action.” Her motivation for proposing this new law is the financial exclusion of many Mexicans. “It is clear to me that financial exclusion is one of the public problems that few of us have addressed with feasible alternatives.”

Kempis praises El Salvador’s president

Kempis praised El Salvador for being a global pioneer for cryptocurrency, considering its prior reputation. Migration, violence, and organized crime were previously the only issues the Central American country was renowned for. Kempis commends Nayib Bukele, El Salvador’s president, for starting a revolution that would reach all nations. “Making bitcoin legal tender means putting a level playing field for people who are excluded in almost all countries.”

On Aug. 28, 2018, Kempis took office and has a master’s degree in Public Administration and Public Policy. Early indicators of her interest in cryptocurrency started with changing her Twitter profile picture to the trademark “laser eyes,” joining fellow senator Eduardo Murat Hinojosa. Bitcoin bull Michael Saylor and Anthony Pompliano are famous for such Twitter profile pics. Kempis also surrounded herself with many individuals who have been involved with bitcoin over the years. The community around her includes entrepreneurs, technologists, and friends who have intimate knowledge of crypto and have encouraged her to become involved.

“And now that I am participating in politics, I seek to promote it,” the senator said.

A constitutional right

According to Kempis, financial inclusion is a constitutional right, and there is a legal basis for inclusion. “What I have been doing is opening the discussion so that the people, the authorities, and the Mexican political class begin to see this as the legal basis for the coming future, because you (Salvadoreans) are showing that this is possible.”

Kempis plans to submit a draft of the new law in one of the two sessions of Congress in 2022. Initially, her goal is to obtain a majority vote that financial inclusion is seen as a constitutional right. She says that the process will be long, and once the journey into bitcoin has started, there is no turning back.

It will be interesting to watch this space, considering Mexican authorities excluded bitcoin in principle from use in the current financial system. Mexican banks are also not allowed to do business with crypto firms, as per Fintech Law.

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David Thomas
David Thomas graduated from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal in Durban, South Africa, with an Honors degree in electronic engineering. He worked as an engineer for eight years, developing software for industrial processes at South African automation specialist Autotronix (Pty) Ltd., mining control systems for AngloGold Ashanti, and consumer products at Inhep Digital Security, a domestic security company wholly owned by Swedish conglomerate Assa Abloy. He has experience writing software in C,...