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A pair of super PACs backed by cryptocurrency financiers is making a $2 million push to elect state Rep. Jasmine Crockett, D-Dallas, in the homestretch of her crowded congressional primary.
It's a major amount of money to commit to the race with less than three weeks left, and it shows how a fledgling network of political action committees with ties to the cryptocurrency world is mobilizing in one of the state's most closely watched March 1 primaries.
Protect Our Future PAC announced Thursday that it is investing $1 million on Crockett's behalf, while a second super PAC, Web3 Forward, shared first with The Texas Tribune on Friday that it was injecting an additional $1 million to the race. The latter said it would put its money toward TV ads — they were already up on the Dallas airwaves as of Thursday — and direct mail for Crockett.
Both super PACs are funded by or connected to a group of cryptocurrency investors who have big ambitions for the midterms. Both groups were formed recently and don't have to disclose their donors yet, but Sam Bankman-Fried, co-founder and CEO of the trading platform FTX, is reportedly helping fund Protect Our Future. Web3 Forward is affiliated with the longer-running GMI PAC, whose leading donors have included another top FTX executive.
Crockett is one of nine Democrats running to succeed retiring U.S. Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson, D-Dallas, in her securely Democratic district. Johnson has endorsed Crockett and campaigned heavily for her.
Super PACs cannot coordinate with candidates. Crockett said she welcomed the support of the two groups, calling their investment a sign of her campaign's momentum.
"The fact they are putting this kind of money behind my candidacy only speaks to the strength of my candidacy," she said.
Protect Our Future has said it is "supporting candidates who take a long term view on policy planning especially as it relates to pandemic preparedness and prevention." Crockett said she was especially excited about the group's focus because it is "something that I have been talking about a lot" on the campaign trail.
Web3 Forward, meanwhile, appears to be more focused on cryptocurrency. "Web3" is a term used to generally discuss the future of the internet, and basing it on the technology that powers decentralized currency.
"Web3 Forward is supporting Crockett because of her commitment to give Texans the opportunity to build and use next-generation Web3 technologies that put power back in the hands of users, democratize financial access, and empower individuals to retake ownership of the internet and their own data," the super PAC said in a news release.
The group teased that it will have "more endorsements in Texas and beyond in the coming days and weeks."
Web3 Forward's TV spot for Crockett is positive, highlighting Crockett's high-profile role in the House Democratic quorum break last year to oppose the GOP's priority elections bill, though it was eventually passed into law. It also touts her backing from Johnson and calls Crockett "the Democrat we can trust."