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Don't Let The ‘he donated to GOP too’ Distract From SBF's Cozy Relationship With Democrats
Did SBF donate to Republicans? Barely. Contributions patterns suggest it was purely to either hide his (or his parents') massive love for The Democratic Party or win over political influence.
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Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) was the 4th biggest political donor during the 2022 midterms. Soon after, SBF was arrested by federal investigators for spending millions of dollars in illegal political contributions, almost entirely to Democratic candidates. As reported by crypto.news, these funds were allegedly made through straw donors:
Sam Bankman-Fried tried covering up the fund’s trail to avoid sanctions
Bankman-Fried and several others are charged in a separate but related federal criminal charge with breaking federal campaign finance policies, including giving illegal contributions totaling about $25,000 to campaigns and political action organizations through straw donor schemes.
What’s a straw donor scheme?
A person or organization using a straw donor technique to circumvent campaign finance contribution limitations is referred to as using a straw donor scheme.
… both sides, Democrats and Republicans, have received donations. So thank you."
– Rep. Maxine Waters
The above quote was Rep. Maxine Waters deflecting a reporter's question about contributions made to her by SBF. It’s a phrase Liberals and Democrats will often use when put on the spotlight to explain their cozy relationship with the FTX Co-Founder and former CEO.
Rep. Waters isn’t wrong; quickly brushing it off after making a broad statement is entirely strategic. If she were forced to explain details, it would be clear that SBF’s donation amount to Republicans dwarfed in size compared to Democrats. Any SBF donations to Republicans were in smaller increments and donated secretly. SBF enables Democrats to use the phrase “donated to both sides” by merely donating half a percent to Republicans of what he contributed to Democrats.
The dataset via OpenSecrets provides the names of politicians to which these contributions are linked; however, due to the complexity of cash flow, only a select one Republican in 2022 could be followed. As a result, the only name that pops up is John Thune (R-SD).
Sen. Thune cooperated with Senators John Boozman, Cory Booker, and Debbie Stabenow in August last year to submit the Digital Commodities Consumer Protection Act. The bill aims to give the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) greater authority when monitoring cryptocurrency. The supposed reason is to “protect consumers from fraud.”
SBF’s contributions to Republicans exist, but barely. However, this doesn’t matter when you’re talking to lawyers—when exactness enhances exaggeration, lawyers, especially Democrat lawyers, will undoubtedly use precision at a high capacity to benefit their narrative. So save the visual and whip it out the next time someone naively says that SBF “donated to both sides.”