As the race for the White House heats up, Democratic candidate for U.S. president Robert Kennedy Jr, has come out as a proponent of Bitcoin, and says he has proven that commitment by buying 14 Bitcoin last May.
In a Wednesday Twitter Spaces interview with crypto investor and podcaster Scott Melker, Kennedy called Bitcoin the currency of freedom, and said he decided to become a crypto investor after he was chided by media outlets for promoting Bitcoin but didn’t own any.
“I bought two Bitcoin for each of my seven children,” Kennedy said, noting he made the move “right after” his appearance at the Bitcoin Conference in May. “Now I’m a Bitcoin owner, and I’m sure they’ll now find a different way to come at me, but no one can say I didn’t put my money where my mouth is.”
Kennedy and Melker also discussed how banks can shut down customer bank accounts without warning, and suggested political pressure may be behind the closure of the bank account of Joseph Mercola, described by the New York Times as “the most influential spreader of coronavirus misinformation online.”
Chase bank has shut down our business bank accounts along with the accounts of my CEO and CFO, as well as their family members (including spouse and child). They’ve refused to provide any reason for doing so, the oldest account has been active for 18 years.…
— Dr. Joseph Mercola (@mercola) July 25, 2023
“Here we have a powerful banking interest that that has received all kinds of federal government support and it’s utterly dependent on its on its relationship with the Fed and the federal government and it is shutting down one of its customers for political speech,” Kennedy said. “I think that incident alone should be one that all of us should be terrified about, and and it makes the the move toward Bitcoin, all the more important.”
During the annual conference held in Miami, Florida, Kennedy said covid-19 restriction led him to Bitcoin, and he claimed to be the first presidential candidate to accept Bitcoin donations through the Lightning Network. But he also said that he didn’t own any, and wasn’t there to give investment advice.
Currently, the price of a Bitcoin is $29,330 per coin, according to CoinMarketCap. At the time of his speech at Bitcoin 2023, the price of a Bitcoin stood around $27,128. If Kennedy’s claims are true, the Kennedy Bitcoin treasury would be worth around $400,000 today.
Earlier this month, a financial disclosure document obtained by CNBC showed Kennedy’s Family held (at the time) between $100,000 and $250,000 worth of Bitcoin.
His conference address established his strong alignment with so-called digital gold.
“When I witnessed this cataclysm—this devastating use of government repression—I realized for the first time how free money is as important to freedom as free expression,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy added that the many environmental claims about Bitcoin are unfounded.
“I believe that the environmental arguments against Bitcoin are a smokescreen to obscure the real motives for suppressing Bitcoin,” he said, citing the massive cost of endless wars and environmentally destructive projects.
While Kennedy is not expected to win the Democratic party’s nomination—online wagering sites put his odds at around 11 percent—he has drawn the support of fervent crypto fans.
“I’m very happy for the support I’ve gotten from the Bitcoin community,” Kennedy said.