Florida Governor Ron DeSantis pushed a platform based partly on “economic independence” in his 2024 presidential campaign, specifically calling out policy on digital currencies.
Speaking at a campaign event in New Hampshire on July 31, DeSantis reiterated his plans of banning central bank digital currencies, or CBDCs, should he win the Republican nomination and presidential race and take office in 2025. The Florida governor added he planned to end U.S. President Joe Biden’s “war on Bitcoin and cryptocurrency” should he win the presidency.
It’s unclear to which specific policies DeSantis was referring, but suggested they were coming through the Federal Reserve. President Biden signed an executive order establishing plans for a regulatory framework for digital currencies in March 2022. The Securities and Exchange Commission has also filed several lawsuits against crypto firms while Biden has been in office, and the Department of Justice has overseen criminal charges for former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried and former Celsius CEO Alex Mashinsky.
DeSantis went on to compare the U.S. government’s plans on a CBDC to those in China, where the central bank is currently conducting trials of a digital yuan. He claimed that “unaccountable elites” in the government could not be trusted to handle the potential rollout of a digital dollar.
“[The Fed wants] to go to a cashless society, they want to eliminate cryptocurrency,” claimed DeSantis. “As president, on day one, CBDC goes into the trash can — we’re not going to allow it.”
New Hampshire is widely considered a suitable testing ground for U.S. presidential candidates due to the state holding the first primary in the national race. DeSantis had a rocky start to his official campaign since announcing it on Twitter — now X — in May, but is still considered the second most viable Republican candidate according to several different polls.
Nearly all polls show DeSantis trailing well behind twice-impeached former president and federally indicted candidate Donald Trump. Both candidates are expected to face votes in state primaries starting in January, leading to a final vote to determine the party candidate at the Republican National Convention in July 2024.
Both Democratic and Republican candidates vying for a place in the 2024 presidential election have voiced opinions on cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) and CBDCs. Robert F. Kennedy Jr., a Democratic party candidate polling roughly 40-50 points behind Biden, has made several pro-crypto statements in his campaign and revealed several BTC purchases. Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, who accepted a BTC salary for his position and helped launch the ‘MiamiCoin’ project, announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination in June.