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Crypto industry’s political influence under scrutiny on Super Tuesday- Republic World

Lack of regulation: The lack of comprehensive regulation in the cryptocurrency market can expose investors to fraud, scams, and security risks. | Image:Pexels

Crypto’s election influence: Super Tuesday is set to become a test of the growing influence of the cryptocurrency industry in US politics. The industry is investing heavily in primary contests in California, Alabama, and Texas to support candidates who are favourable to crypto and oppose those advocating for more regulations.

Super Tuesday spending

The outcome of these primary races will provide insight into the potential political power of wealthy crypto executives in the upcoming November elections. New super PACs like Fairshake, Protect Progress, and Defend American Jobs, funded by entities like Coinbase and the Winklevoss twins, have already spent around $13 million in Super Tuesday primaries.

These super PACs have amassed a significant war chest, with nearly $102 million raised between January 2023 and January 2024, as reported by the Federal Election Commission. This demonstrates the cryptocurrency industry’s increasing financial involvement in US politics, with contributions rising substantially compared to previous election cycles.

Strategic candidate support

One notable target of these efforts is progressive Democrat Katie Porter, running for Senate in California. Fairshake has poured over $10 million into opposing Porter’s candidacy, citing her stance on regulating the industry. Similarly, Protect Progress has allocated funds to support candidates like Shomari Figures in Alabama and Representative Julie Johnson in Texas, who advocate embracing digital assets.

In North Carolina, Defend American Jobs is backing Republican Representatives John Bradford III and Tim Moore with over $1 million in funding. With Democrats expected to potentially take control of the House, individual candidates’ positions on cryptocurrency could have implications for future legislation.

Coinbase, a major player in the crypto space, is actively involved in shaping public opinion through initiatives like the Stand With Crypto Alliance, which aims to mobilise voters who own cryptocurrency.

Crypto campaign backlash

However, the industry’s foray into politics is not without controversy. The involvement of figures like FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried, who was found guilty of financial fraud, raises concerns about the sources of funding for political contributions. Some campaigns have even returned donations linked to Bankman-Fried’s crypto ventures amid legal challenges.

Overall, the cryptocurrency industry’s engagement in the 2024 election highlights its growing influence in shaping political discourse and policy decisions.

(With Reuters Inputs)

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