On the theory that the way to a politician’s heart is through their wallet, the Chamber of Digital Commerce launched a crypto education campaign in the way most likely to gain the attention of members of Congress—it gave them each $50 campaign donation in bitcoin.
The donations, from the Chamber of Digital Commerce’s political action committee—or PAC—are intended to raise awareness in the halls of congress (where 50 bucks does not make you a K Street lobbiest).
Comparing the Crypto for Congress campaign donations to “the time Members of Congress received their first email or sent their first Tweet,” the Chamber said its goal is to foster a deeper understanding of this technology’s vast potential, from enabling greater participation in the political process to revolutionizing every industry in our economy.”
And the best way to understand the vast potential of cryptocurrency is to set up a digital wallet, said Perianne Boring, founder and president of the Chamber of Digital Commerce.
“Now is the moment for all Members of Congress to learn about and embrace cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology,” Boring said in a release. “Many other nations like China, Japan, Singapore and Switzerland have rapidly embraced blockchain technology and created robust national plans to be global leaders in this area. The United States is falling behind in technological innovation and this is not a risk we should be willing to take.”
Custody firm Anchorage is among the blockchain and cryptocurrency companies supporting the Crypto for Congress campaign.
“It is important for the U.S. to maintain its position of strength in capital markets, especially when countries around the world are actively exploring and implementing their own crypto initiatives,” Nathan McCauley, co-founder and CEO of Anchorage, told Modern Consensus. “Lawmakers will play a pivotal role in ensuring the United States leads in blockchain innovation as the global economy transforms.”
Other industry supporters of Crypto for Congress are Armanino, BitPay, BlockFi, Bloq, CMT Digital, Circle, Civic, Core Scientific, eToro, Flipside Crypto, Hedera Hashgraph, Medici Ventures, Messari and Paxos.
The Crypto for Congress campaign was created with the Congressional Blockchain Caucus.
“The lightbulb moment is now,” said Rep. Tom Emmer (R-MN), one of the most prominent members of the caucus. “Crypto for Congress brings an opportunity for our entire Congressional community to join this generational shift in finance and technology”
Another leading CBC supporter, Rep. Darren Soto (D-FL), added “[u]nderstanding how this technology works at a hands-on level is an important step we must take to promote innovation and maximize the potential of cryptocurrencies for the U.S. economy.”
Soto is author of the Blockchain Innovation Act, which in September became the first blockchain bill to pass the U.S. House of Representatives. It calls for the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Commerce to submit a report to Congress that examines how blockchain could reduce fraud and increase security.