Crypto super PAC has spent more than $10 million in midterm primaries

Quick Take

  • GMI PAC says it has spent more than $10 million on congressional and senate races this cycle. 
  • It is now setting its sights on general elections this upcoming November and 2024. 

GMI PAC—a political action committee backed by some of the crypto market's biggest participants—is setting its sights on 2024 after spending more than $10 million in this cycle’s congressional primary races.

The super PAC is claiming success in across several House and Senate seats, though other factors, like endorsements from party leaders or incumbency, were also at play. A representative for the PAC told The Block that it has backed 15 successful candidates, including most recently Democrat Seth Magaziner who won a primary in Rhode Island last week.

GMI PAC launched at the beginning of the year to help elect politicians who support innovation in technology, specifically in the crypto sector. GMI—a common mantra in crypto circles—stands for "gonna make it."

Other notable candidates that GMI supported include Sen. John Boozman, the top Republican on the Senate Agriculture Committee and a cosponsor of legislation to broaden the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s power to directly regulate digital assets, and Democrat Jonathan Jackson, son of famed political activist Jesse Jackson, and the strong favorite to win a congressional seat representing parts of Chicago. The PAC also backed Democrat Glenn Ivey in a hotly contested Maryland primary. 

“I oppose efforts to ban cryptocurrency,” Ivey wrote on his campaign website, as reported by The Block's Stephanie Murray. “This innovation should not be stifled before it has a chance to mature and add value to the U.S. economy."

Chris Lehane, a former Clinton White House official who works for Katie Haun’s crypto fund Haun Ventures, credited the PAC’s work. “GMI has been as smart as they have been sophisticated in focusing on Democratic and Republican primaries where there was a clear pro crypto candidate running,” said Lehane.

The PAC's founding donors and board of directors include CMS Holdings co-founder Dan Matuszewski, Framework Ventures co-founder Vance Spencer, and FTX Digital Markets CEO Ryan Salame. Donors include crypto exchange giant FTX, investment firm Paradigm, Multicoin, and venture firm a16z.

Salame himself has donated more than $13 million on backing Republican candidates, including his partner Michelle Bond, a digital asset trade association director who ran for New York's first congressional district, but did not receive the Republican nomination. Salame's contributions sometimes overlap with GMI. 

The PAC plans to continue supporting the candidates it’s backed who have competitive general elections, though most have easy general elections.

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