Beware Donald Trump’s Bitcoin Promises

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  • Trump’s recent promotion of Bitcoin has excited the crypto community, gaining support from influencers for his presidential nomination
  • The discussion of Bitcoin by a presidential candidate is seen as significant, yet Trump’s involvement warrants skepticism
  • Trump’s history of lies and past criticism of Bitcoin suggest his newfound support is nothing more than a ruse to ensnare younger voters and pay for his lawsuits

Donald Trump’s recent pivot to promoting Bitcoin has been met with glee by many in the crypto space, with influencers now coming out in support of his presidential nomination. Having a presidential candidate discussing Bitcoin and self-custodial wallets might seem like a turning point in the cryptocurrency’s history, but coming from this individual in particular, such hope should come with a massive pinch of salt. From his perpetual lies to his years-long denigration of the cryptocurrency, there are plenty of reasons to think that Trump cares as much about the adoption of Bitcoin as he does about staying awake in his own criminal trials.

Bitcoin ”Just Seems Like a Scam”

Those celebrating Trump’s recent recent endorsement have seemingly forgotten his past comments. In July 2019, he tweeted, “I am not a fan of Bitcoin and other Cryptocurrencies, which are not money, and whose value is highly volatile and based on thin air,” going on to express concerns about the unregulated nature of cryptocurrencies, implying that they could facilitate illegal activities such as drug trafficking and money laundering.

Trump is, perhaps unsurprisingly, a yuge fan of the dollar, calling a “scam” in 2021, adding, “I don’t like it because it’s another currency competing against the dollar.” He was also keen to “go after Bitcoin” in 2018 following the 2016-17 bull run, which he achieved through allowing the introduction of futures through the Cboe and CME.

It is important, therefore, not to lose sight of the fact that as little as three years ago Trump was calling Bitcoin a scam, and so we have to ask ourselves if he has suddenly decided to learn all about it or whether there is something else at play.

A History of Deception

Donald Trump has a well-documented history of making false statements, many more than most politicians. According to The Washington Post, Trump made over 30,000 false or misleading claims during his presidency. This track record of dishonesty suggests that any new stance he takes should be approached with caution, with his past behavior indicating a pattern of saying whatever is convenient or beneficial at the moment, regardless of the truth.

Allied to this, politicians often say what they think will garner votes, and Trump is no exception. His recent pro-Bitcoin rhetoric could be seen as an attempt to appeal to younger, more tech-savvy voters who are enthusiastic about cryptocurrencies. This demographic has become increasingly significant in recent elections, and aligning with their interests could be a strategic move, especially with Republican policies appealing more to an over-50 base.

Don’t forget, too, that Republicans often adopt stances in direct opposition to Democrats, regardless of the underlying merits. With several prominent Democrats expressing skepticism or outright opposition to cryptocurrencies, it’s predictable that Trump and other Republicans would take the opposite stance. This reflexive contrarianism is more about political positioning than informed decision-making.

Grifter in Chief

Trump’s financial situation is another critical factor in his campaign promoting and accepting cryptocurrencies. Facing numerous lawsuits and substantial legal fees, Trump has shown a willingness to secure funds through various means, including his own bibles and his infamous (and hideous) NFT collections.

His openness to crypto donations can be interpreted as a way to amass money quickly and efficiently, and it is a racing certainty that his campaign will not care if the money comes from illicit sources; indeed, using cryptocurrencies may be a handy way to ensure that his supporters in other countries can find a way to support him.

Trump would pivot to buttons tomorrow if society suddenly decided that they held significant value, and so his supposed support of Bitcoin is nothing of the sort.

Not a Clue

Trump’s speech over the weekend included comments about Bitcoin and custodial wallets, comments which sounded odd coming from a presidential candidate, but it must be remembered that Trump was merely reading what was on the teleprompter in front of him. Those words were written by his staff, and it’s a racing certainty that he has no idea what Bitcoin actually does, as proved by his comments to date. 

True advocacy for cryptocurrency requires a comprehensive understanding of its mechanics, benefits, and risks, something that a former presidential candidate, Andrew Yang, has in spades. A debate on Bitcoin between Yang and Trump would be far more illuminating than a few loudly spoken words at a rally.


Donald Trump’s recent promotion of Bitcoin contained more red flags than a beach during shark mating season. His history of lying, his years of criticism of Bitcoin, his financial desperation, his apparent lack of genuine understanding, and his tendency for partisan opposition all suggest that his endorsement is nothing more than a desperate attempt to curry favor with a younger demographic and pay his legal bills at the same time.

Trump’s surface-level support will, sadly, convince some that he has truly changed his mind on Bitcoin and he supports the principles behind it, but you can bet your last Trump NFT that he will drop it quicker than a racial slur once it comes to supporting Bitcoin or the US dollar.