FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried donated $40 million to political campaigns leading into the midterms, leading some to worry about crypto’s place in Washington, report says

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Sam Bankman Fried.ftx

  • Sam Bankman-Fried and FTX executives have donated a total of $70 million to political campaigns in 18 months, according to OpenSecrets.

  • Bankman-Fried himself donated $40 million to mostly liberal efforts, while fellow exec Ryan Salame donated $23 million mostly to Republicans.

  • Critics are now scrutinizing the role of cryptocurrency in politics following the dramatic demise of FTX.

According to data from OpenSecrets, FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried and other company executives have donated more than $70 million to political campaigns leading up to the 2022 midterm elections.

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Bankman-Fried himself donated nearly $40 million to Democratic candidates and political action committees, according to OpenSecrets, a nonpartisan organization that tracks campaign spending in US politics. He was the second highest donor to liberal efforts behind George Soros and the sixth highest donor overall.

Meanwhile, Ryan Salame, a fellow FTX senior executive, donated more than $23 million, mostly to Republican candidates and efforts. The remaining donations came from Nishad Singh, FTX technical director, who contributed $8 million to liberal efforts.

Their collective contributions made FTX the third-largest contributor to political efforts this election cycle, helping to propel cryptocurrency into one of Washington’s highest-spending industries.

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Now, in the wake of FTX’s dramatic implosion and bankruptcy — which caused Bankman-Fried to step down from his position while simultaneously losing $16 billion of his net worth earlier this month — the donations are drawing more attention to the cryptocurrency industry’s influence on politics.

FTX’s rapid demise also led many to criticize “effective altruism,” a worldview of Bankman-Fried and some of his colleagues that led to the creation of the Future Fund, an effort to make socially impactful investments.

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During an interview on NBC’s Meet the Press in September, Bankman-Fried discussed his political donations and acknowledged the impact such sizeable contributions can have on lawmakers.

“Honestly, everyone should always be skeptical about this sort of thing,” Bankman-Fried said of political donations. “I’m not going to tell people to release everyone. What I would say is look at the evidence, try to figure out what’s going on.”

Read the original article on Business Insider

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