Crypto Is Getting Political—Ethereum Giant Consensys Wants to Stay Out of It


As crypto emerges as an increasingly partisan issue in the 2024 presidential election—what with Donald Trump making overtures to the industry, and President Joe Biden threatening to kill legislation intended to protect it—American crypto companies have begun feverishly spending to aid the campaigns of pro-crypto candidates across the country.

Industry mainstays like Coinbase, Andreessen Horowitz, and Ripple Labs have already dedicated tens of millions of dollars to influencing key Senate and House races this year. Meanwhile, crypto leaders have begun openly embracing Trump in a manner unthinkable four years ago.

But amid the crypto industry’s rise as a force in American election fundraising, one of the country’s most valuable crypto firms has opted to stay out of partisan politics altogether. 

Consensys, the $7 billion Ethereum software giant, has notably refrained from backing crypto-friendly candidates in the 2024 election. To the company’s founder and CEO, Joe Lubin, this is a deliberate choice intended to ensure the crypto industry’s long-term success (disclosure: Consensys is one of 22 investors in Decrypt).

“Politically, we’ve liked to remain neutral,” Lubin told Decrypt. “It doesn’t make sense for us to choose one broken party over another.”

Relying on one political party or faction to support crypto is not as sustainable a long-term strategy as solidifying the industry’s legality via the judiciary, the Ethereum co-creator believes. 

“The way through all of this, the way that we land… is to rely on the courts,” he said. 

Last month, Consensys filed a preemptive lawsuit against the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), arguing that the regulator has no legal authority to classify ETH as a security—a position it has secretly held for over a year, the suit revealed.

“The lawsuit with the SEC is a good platform for us to help people understand the benefits of the technology,” Lubin said. “I don’t think we need to be politically partisan or make political donations in order to be a very clear and loud voice on this topic.”

That’s not to say, though, that the entrepreneur has eschewed politics altogether—far from it. Lubin says that Consensys regularly has closed-door conversations with politicians and regulators about the importance of crypto to America’s future. 

What’s key, though, is that those conversations are aimed at creating broad—forgive the pun—consensus around crypto.

“We may not be visible,” Lubin said of Consensys’ political machinations, “but we are certainly doing things.”

Edited by Andrew Hayward

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