Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who launched his presidential campaign in a Twitter Spaces event with Elon Musk on Wednesday evening, said he'd protect bitcoin if he's elected next year.
"I think people should be able to do bitcoin," DeSantis said as 300,000 listeners tuned in. "As president, we'll protect the ability to do things like bitcoin."
DeSantis, who earlier this month moved to prohibit any kind of a central bank digital currency in the state, said that bitcoin represented a threat to "central planners" that want "control over society." He said any kind of regulation over cryptocurrencies should ultimately be up to Congress, and that he'd oppose any kind of a ban should one ever emerge.
The Republican, who will try and take on former President Donald Trump in the primary election, has expressed support in the past for decentralized cryptocurrencies. He acknowledged risks in the sector but said that people should be able to make their own decisions.
"I just do not have an itch to have to control everything that people may be doing in this space, and I think the current regime, clearly, they have it out for bitcoin, and if it continues for another four years, they'll probably end up killing it," DeSantis said.
The comments come as crypto exchanges such as Coinbase have battled U.S. regulators, with some warning that regulatory uncertainly in the country could push the industry offshore. Cathie Wood's Ark Invest wrote earlier this week that the country is at risk of losing a leading position in the global crypto ecosystem to countries including the United Arab Emirates, South Korea, Australia and Switzerland.
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