First Republican primary debate What is the candidates’ stance on encryption?

Author: LianGuaiBitpushNews Mary Liu

The first debate among eight Republican presidential candidates has ended on Wednesday (August 23) evening in the United States. This is the first major event before the next US presidential election. So, what is the candidates’ stance on cryptocurrencies?

Donald Trump

Former US President and Republican frontrunner Donald Trump was absent from the debate.

As reported by LianGuai earlier, according to the financial disclosure documents submitted to the United States Office of Government Ethics on August 15, Trump’s Ethereum wallet holds over 2.8 million US dollars worth of cryptocurrencies. The disclosed information also shows that Trump has earned nearly 4.9 million US dollars in licensing fees from a series of NFTs launched by his campaign team.

Trump previously stated in a personal tweet in 2019 that he is “not a fan of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies” and supports the US dollar.

The size of Trump’s cryptocurrency holdings almost qualifies him as a “whale” in the crypto industry. This is an ironic twist for someone who has described cryptocurrencies as a “scam” and “very dangerous.”

Ron DeSantis, Governor of Florida

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis expressed support for Bitcoin from the first day he became a candidate. During the opening ceremony of the campaign event, DeSantis stated that if President Joe Biden is reelected, Bitcoin could be “eliminated.”

DeSantis said, “You have every right to use Bitcoin. The only reason those people in Washington don’t like it is because they can’t control it.”

Ron DeSantis has also criticized Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDC). He referred to this technology as a “massive transfer of power from individual consumers to central institutions” and took action to prevent the launch of the digital dollar in Florida.

Entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy

38-year-old biotechnology entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy is also a supporter of cryptocurrencies.

Vivek Ramaswamy challenged Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in the Republican primary to vie for the second position. He is one of the richest individuals under the age of 40 in the United States. According to Forbes, Vivek briefly became a billionaire, but the stock market slump reduced his wealth to slightly over 950 million US dollars.

He made a statement at the Miami Bitcoin Conference: “Thomas Jefferson, if he were still here, would also mine Bitcoin. I have no doubt about it. This is a reflection of the American spirit, it’s our human nature.”

Ramaswamy also stated that Bitcoin is not a security, denounced the Federal Reserve’s attempt to play “the god of finance,” criticized CBDC, and criticized the Biden administration’s proposal to impose a 30% consumption tax on cryptocurrency mining.

He said that one of his main goals in running for office is to reform the US Federal Reserve, and he hopes that attendees will donate Bitcoin to his campaign to get him on the debate stage and make 2024 a “referendum on sound money in America.”

Ramaswamy said in a May interview with CoinDesk that he is the only candidate with enough knowledge to talk about Bitcoin sensibly. He also accused DeSantis of taking positions that support Bitcoin and oppose CBDC in many ways.

Earlier this week, Ramaswamy received praise from Elon Musk, who called him “a very promising candidate.”

South Carolina Senator Tim Scott

South Carolina Senator Tim Scott is a member of the Senate’s core innovation group, which discusses issues such as digital assets, stablecoins, and CBDC, and he supports cryptocurrency regulation.

Tim Scott is also a co-sponsor of the “Access to Capital for All Investors Act,” which ultimately failed last year but attempted to define digital assets as investments and modify existing rules regarding qualified investors.

In a Senate Banking Committee hearing in February specifically discussing digital assets, he criticized SEC Chairman Gary Gensler’s decision to be absent and questioned whether the SEC was “asleep at the wheel” for failing to take action against FTX in a timely manner, leading to the exchange’s collapse in November of last year.

He said, “The American people deserve to know why no action was taken before the collapse of FTX and how millions of hard-earned American dollars went up in smoke.”

North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum

North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum is not a vocal supporter of Bitcoin in his campaign, but he has sent friendly signals to the crypto industry multiple times in the past year, noting that the state has become a center for cryptocurrency mining when commenting on the construction of data centers in North Dakota last year.

He said, “This significant investment in North Dakota further cements our state’s growing reputation as a data center and cryptocurrency mining hub, and we have the ability to support data centers and other energy-intensive industries.”

Candidates with unclear positions

Several candidates have not made public comments about cryptocurrency or Bitcoin, including former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley, former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, and former Vice President Mike Pence.

Miami Mayor unable to participate in the debate

According to ABC Action News, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, who has been supportive of cryptocurrency, admitted yesterday that he does not qualify to participate in the debate and mistakenly claimed a week ago that he did.

In an interview with The Block, Suarez said that if elected president, he might pay his salary in Bitcoin, and he has already done so during his tenure as Miami Mayor. In addition, the candidate accepts Bitcoin transactions.

He said, “I believe it is very important for the president to encourage innovation, and I do support alternative assets such as cryptocurrencies. I think they are very beneficial for countries like the United States.”

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