Sam Bankman-Fried, the previous CEO of cryptocurrency alternate FTX, reportedly mulled providing Donald Trump $5 billion to dissuade the U.S. forty fifth president from working for workplace once more in 2024.
The revelation comes from Michael Lewis, writer of “The Huge Brief” and his new guide on the disgraced cryptocurrency alternate founder, “Going Infinite: The Rise and Fall of a New Tycoon,” the place he delves into the rise and fall of Bankman-Fried and FTX.
In keeping with Lewis, Bankman-Fried even sought to seek out out the potential value of such a proposition.
“That solely shocks you if you do not know Sam,” Lewis mentioned in an interview with CBS Information’ 60 Minutes aired on Sunday. “Sam’s considering, ‘We might pay Donald Trump to not run for president. Like, how a lot would it not take?'”
In keeping with Lewis, who gained all-hours entry to the disgraced crypto mogul, Bankman-Fried noticed Trump as somebody attempting to undermine democracy, considering that he “belongs on the record of existential dangers.”
Furthermore, there was a particular determine mentioned for Trump’s withdrawal from the elections.
“The quantity that was kicking round once I was speaking to Sam about this was $5 billion,” said Lewis, including that SBF “was unsure that quantity got here straight from Trump.”
Lewis additional asserted that SBF was desperate to fund Republican candidates at odds with Trump and even approached “probably the most unlikely of allies”—Republican Senate minority chief Mitch McConnell—and “they have been nonetheless having these conversations when FTX blew up” in November 2022.
“So why did not it occur? He did not have $5 billion anymore,’ mentioned Lewis.
Decrypt has reached out to the workplaces of each Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell with media inquiries and can replace the article ought to we hear again.
Sam Bankman-Fried’s political donations
Earlier than the FTX collapsed final 12 months, Bankman-Fried had been a big political donor to each Republicans and Democrats, contributing greater than $70 million to election campaigns in lower than 18 months.
He personally contributed a minimal of $40 million to politicians and political motion committees main as much as the 2022 midterm elections. A considerable portion of those contributions went to Democrats and liberal-leaning organizations.
Consequently, he ranked because the second-largest general donor to Democrats behind George Soros solely.
Bankman-Fried additionally donated a big quantity to fundraising committees and tremendous PACs affiliated with each events, together with a $6 million contribution to the Home Majority PAC, the principle exterior group supporting Home Democrats.
Bankman-Fried did make donations to Republicans as nicely. Nevertheless, the exact quantity of his contributions to Republican causes will not be disclosed, as they have been made as undisclosed “darkish” donations.
In keeping with the political finance monitoring web site Open Secrets and techniques, “darkish cash” refers to spending meant to affect political outcomes the place the supply of the cash will not be disclosed.
Nevertheless, SBF admitted to giving an equal quantity to Republicans as he did to Democrats, so his whole political contributions might have truly been round $80 million.
The FTX founder, who is ready to go on trial this week, is going through eight counts of conspiracy and fraud, together with an allegation that he violated marketing campaign finance legal guidelines
His firm, now beneath the management of CEO John J. Ray III, has been attempting to claw again the donations made by Bankman-Fried and different FTX executives, for the reason that finish of final 12 months.