A Bitcoiner and cypherpunk to run for US Senate as a Republican from New Hampshire

A podcaster and entrepreneur Bruce Fenton announced he funded his US Senate campaign account with 85 BTC of his own money and vowed to tear down regulatory obstacles for crypto.

An image of Bruce Fenton form press kit.
Image: brucefenton.com

For several years, Bruce Fenton has been an active member of The Free State Project, New Hampshire’s libertarian movement, but decided to run as a Republican. Fenton, who describes himself as a libertarian, believes that the United States should be guided by the values of personal freedom and human rights historically found in American political philosophy.

“New Hampshire is a very special state when it comes to politics,” Fenton’s website reads. “The first in the nation Live Free or Die state should be an example to the rest of America,” he claims boldly, quoting his state’s motto that greatly contrasts with more moderate statements adopted by other states.

Fenton believes that his crypto and economic background would help him to advocate for Bitcoin adoption and fix the “melting ice cube” fiat monetary system. From April 2015 to July 2016, Fenton served as the executive director of the Bitcoin Foundation, now a practically inactive nonprofit that was lobbying for legitimizing Bitcoin.

The organization, however, newer secured a significant legal victory for crypto. Throughout its history, Bitcoin Foundation has been shaken by numerous internal crises, including regulatory troubles, Mt. Gox bankruptcy and the subsequent resignation of its CEO from the BF board, statutory rape charges against another board member, and, finally, an announcement of the nonprofit’s insolvency that was kept secret from the public.

Read also: Web3 projects may yield greater profits than BTC or ETH

Although Fenton’s crypto lobbying experience may be not so bright, he still possesses expertise in traditional finance, having served as a vice president at Morgan Stanley and a chief investment officer at Atlantic Financial. Fenton is also a CEO at Chainstone Labs, a fintech company specializing in securities tokenization.

As crypto faces serious regulatory obstacles in the US, with SEC Chair Gary Gensler recently announcing that only Bitcoin may be deemed a commodity, many retail and institutional investors are ready to empty their pockets for political candidates who promise to lift these burdens. “As a licensed securities broker and financial professional, I am concerned about America’s ability to compete globally due to our burdensome regulatory environment,” Fenton wrote on his website’s “Viewpoints” section. “Companies and people should be far more free to trade and interact as they wish.”

Fenton announced he started his campaign with $5m of personal savings and plans to raise more through crypto donations. The crypto candidate likely won’t be short of funds, as some big players in the industry tweeted their support for his run as a Senator. The names include Custodia Bank’s Caitlin Long and ShapeShift founder Erik Voorhees.

New Hampshire’s incumbent Senator, Democrat Maggie Hassan, already announced she will seek reelection. However, the polls reveal that just 33 percent of voters approve of her job performance, making her position vulnerable to a Republican takeover. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that Fenton is posed for the easy win, as he will race against eleven Republican candidates, including Chuck Morse, who served twice as President of the NH Senate, and Don Bolduc, a retired general and avid Trump supporter.

The 2022 United States Senate primary will occur on September 13, 2022. The general election will be held on November 8, 2022.