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Spending On Crypto Lobbying At Record Levels

The cryptocurrency industry’s spending on lobbying politicians in the U.S. is at record levels.

According to nonprofit research group OpenSecrets, cryptocurrency companies spent $18.96 million U.S. in the first three quarters of 2023 on lobbying government officials in America.

That compares with $16.1 million U.S. spent on lobbying during the same period of 2022 and is at a record amount.

Coinbase (COIN), the largest U.S. cryptocurrency exchange, has led the lobbying this year, spending $2.16 million U.S. through the end of September.

Other top spenders on lobbying include the Blockchain Association and crypto exchange Binance.

Crypto companies have been expanding their influence in Washington, D.C., in part to try and fix their reputations after a string of scandals that included the collapse of the FTX exchange in November 2022.

Crypto firms are also trying to combat growing regulatory pressure, especially from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that says the industry has been violating its rules.

Lobbying by crypto companies escalated significantly after the SEC launched lawsuits against Coinbase and Binance in June of this year for allegedly breaching U.S. securities laws.

The industry has also been pushing the SEC to approve a spot Bitcoin (BTC) exchange-traded fund (ETF), which could result in an influx of capital into cryptocurrencies.

Bitcoin, the largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, has risen 152% this year to trade at just under $42,000 U.S.