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US crypto advocacy group tops 1 million members after Biden veto

WASHINGTON: Stand with Crypto, an advocacy organisation for voters who own cryptocurrencies, saw its membership surpass 1 million on Wednesday (Jun 5), as crypto backers push politicians to create a new regulatory framework for the digital asset industry while averting more onerous compliance requirements.

Brian Armstrong, chief executive of Coinbase, an online platform for buying and selling crypto that helped launch Stand With Crypto last August, said the group's rapid growth showed the potential voting power of cryptocurrency users.

"It's a much bigger voting bloc than most people probably would have anticipated," Armstrong told Reuters.

The cryptocurrency industry is spending tens of millions of dollars in US elections this year to boost crypto-friendly candidates and defeat those pushing for more regulation.

Coinbase on Monday announced a US$25 million donation to the pro-crypto political action committee Fairshake, matching recent contributions from crypto payments company Ripple and tech-focused venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz.

Stand with Crypto has targeted voters in swing states and now has nearly 24,000 members in Georgia, where Democratic President Joe Biden beat Republican Donald Trump in 2020 by 11,779 votes, and over 16,000 members in Arizona, where Biden won by just over 10,000 votes.

Armstrong said a surge in the group's membership was fuelled by frustration over Biden's May 31 veto of a measure that aimed to overturn the Securities and Exchange Commission's accounting bulletin on crypto assets, and by strong support for the Republican-sponsored bill that would create a new legal framework for digital currencies.

The Republican-led House of Representatives passed the so-called Financial Innovation and