The crypto community rejoiced Tuesday upon learning that Representative Tom Emmer (R-MN), an outspoken advocate for the novel financial industry, had secured the Republican nomination for Speaker of the House. That excitement was short-lived, however, after mounting objections to the nomination from key Republicans—led by former president Donald Trump. 

Within hours, Emmer reportedly withdrew from the race, starting the tumultuous process of selecting a new Speaker all over again.

His path to the gavel seemed plausible at first. In a closed-door, informal vote among the House’s 221 Republicans, Emmer received 117 votes to become the party’s next candidate for Speaker.

In the minutes following news of the nomination, numerous prominent crypto executives and influencers took to Twitter to voice their support for Emmer’s candidacy, marveling at the possibility of having such a vocal ally of their industry rise to such a powerful position in the American political system. 


Emmer, currently the third-highest-ranking Republican in the House, has cemented a reputation over the last year and a half as one of Washington’s fiercest and most unconditional crypto proponents. He has lambasted federal agencies for blacklisting privacy-minded crypto tools, defended the crypto industry even amidst the politically seismic collapse of FTX last November, and—in light of Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) chair Gary Gensler’s apparent hostility to crypto—gone so far as to draft a bill legally mandating Gensler’s firing. 

Had his candidacy progressed, he would still have had to win a vote on the House floor to secure the position: a feat that has been attempted and failed, repeatedly, by multiple other Republican congressmen in recent weeks, following the historic ousting of former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) earlier this month. 


Emmer would have undoubtedly become the most powerful pro-crypto politician in American history. The Speaker of the House is next in line to the presidency after the Vice President. 

But just after Emmer received the Speaker nomination, Trump issued a harsh rebuke of the congressman, imploring other Republicans to torpedo his candidacy. 

I have many wonderful friends wanting to be Speaker of the House, and some are truly great Warriors. RINO Tom Emmer, who I do not know well, is not one of them,” Trump wrote on Truth Social, his social media platform, using an acronym for “Republican in name only.”

“Voting for a Globalist RINO like Tom Emmer would be a tragic mistake!” the former president continued, after accusing Emmer—who markets himself as a close Trump ally—of being disingenuous in his loyalty. 

The critique was a deal breaker for Emmer, who needed clinch the support of a core group of right-wing, fiercely pro-Trump congresspeople to attain the Speakership, given Republicans' current razor-thin House majority. 

One such congressman, Matt Gaetz (R-FL), who himself instigated the ouster of former Speaker Kevin McCarthy earlier this month, jumped on Trump’s critique of Emmer as soon as it was issued, calling it a potential game-changer. 


Editor's note: this article was updated to note that Emmer withdrew his nomination hours after securing most of the required votes in a closed-door GOP meeting.

Edited by Ryan Ozawa.

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