With the 2022 USA midterm elections in mind, Coinbase, one of the world’s leading crypto exchanges, has formed a political action committee (PAC) for assisting ‘crypto-forward lawmakers’. The Coinbase Innovation PAC was registered by the crypto exchange’s US policy head Kara Calvert and chief financial officer Alesia Haas. The Federal Election Commission filing was done on February 7th.
PACs are organizations that are formed with the objective of raising funds for electing candidates who support similar causes. This latest move from the crypto exchange is an indication of its support for candidates who have a positive stance towards cryptocurrencies. The 2022 USA midterm elections (both federal and state) will take place in November 2022. Previously, in July 2018, Coinbase had registered another PAC. However, in 2019, Coinbase closed the PAC after not having received or disbursed any funds.
For a long time, Coinbase had held itself back from a PAC formation, as it didn’t want to interfere in US politics. However, the crypto exchange was concerned about the potential impact that office-holding anti-crypto lawmakers would have. In 2021, they tried to address this concern by coming together with Square (now rebranded as Block) in April 2021 to form the Crypto Council for Innovation. The aim of the council was to facilitate dialogues with lawmakers and regulators on cryptocurrencies.
According to reports from Politico, Coinbase also spent $1.5 million in 2021 on lobbying. A Coinbase spokesperson said that the exchange intends to support lawmakers who are crypto-forward and aligned with the exchange’s mission of advancing economic freedom for all citizens of the USA.