Federal Election Commission filings have disclosed that some top executives of the fallen crypto exchange FTX donated to George Santos, a New York Representative, the maximum amount of money allowed under the stipulated Federal law during his campaign in 2022.
Those executives include the exchange’s co-CEO Ryan Salame, FTX’s former head of product Ramnik Arora and ex-FTX senior executive Claire Watanabe. Salame’s donation to Santos is not unusual, as he has been known to be a big political donor over the years.
Furthermore, Watanabe and Arora also donated to House candidates Carrick Flynn, former FTX boss Sam Bankman-Fried’s favorite, and Michelle Bond, the alleged girlfriend to Salame and a massive crypto advocate. However, the two candidates lost their bids.
Motives Behind FTX’s Ex-Executives’ Donations to Santos Remain Unclarified
Both Flynn and Bond are said to be huge supporters of the crypto industry; therefore, it makes sense why the FTX’s ex-leadership would donate large amounts to them. However, why they made maximum contributions to Santos remains unclear.
First of all, Santos never prioritized any crypto-related issue during his campaign. He gained national attention after his claims on the campaign trail were discovered to be total lies. Santos claimed he graduated from Baruch College; however, the institution said it does not have a record of him as a student.
The New York Congressman marketed himself as a self-made entrepreneur during the campaign. His financial disclosure forms stated that he made over $11 million over the last three years. Additionally, In 2020, the firm he worked for was charged by a US regulator with operating an alleged Ponzi Scheme.
Santos Ignores Calls for His Resignation
Recently, there have been several calls for Santos’ resignation from fellow Republicans. Antony D’Esposito, a Republican representing the 4th District of Hempstead Town, said Santos could not be a good representative and that the taxpayers deserved to have new effective leadership.
It remains to be seen if Santos will heed the resignation calls. And whether he will disclose the full list of the donors who funded his campaign is still unclear. But at least it can now be confirmed that a significant chunk of the campaign funds came from FTX’s ex-leadership.
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