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Virginia Senate kills measure that would have planned for currency collapse

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RICHMOND — Virginia’s Senate on Tuesday killed a measure that would have set up a commission to study what the Commonwealth should do in event of the collapse of the U.S. currency.

The resolution — sponsored by Del. Robert Marshall (R-Prince William) — initially would have begun a study into whether the Commonwealth should develop its own coin or other monetary unit in the event of economic collapse.

The bill attracted attention nationally — some of it filled with mockery – and provoked laughter among some members of the Senate during Tuesday’s debate.

But supporters said the study would be a prudent step, given the aggressively expansive monetary policies undertaken by the U.S. Federal Reserve since the worst recession in generations. They said the Commonwealth should be prepared in the event that the nation’s banking system was compromised by hackers.

A Senate committee amended the measure, however, to make it clear that the proposed study would not explore creating a Virginia monetary unit or minting a coin.

That caused some senators Tuesday to wonder why the measure would be necessary at all. Others characterized the measure as a waste of time and said further passage would invite more ridicule.

“Do we want to be ridiculed on ‘Saturday Night Live’ or don’t we?’ ” asked Sen. Janet D. Howell (D-Fairfax).

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