Market Commentary

Cawthorn Fined for Promoting ‘Let’s Go Brandon’ Coin

Ahmed Asaad
6 Feb 2024 · 2 minutes read

U.S. representative Madison Cawthorn has been fined $15,237 for breaching rules protecting against conflicts of interest. This was after he promoted a cryptocurrency he had invested in according to sites focused on insider trading tracking. 

The cryptocurrency Cawthorn bought is a less popular meme coin named Let’s Go Brandon” (LGB) - a coded curse word meant to insult U.S. President Joe Biden. According to the report by the United States House Committee on Ethics, which imposed a financial penalty, the Investigation Subcommittee (ISC) discovered “substantial evidence” that Cawthorn promoted a crypto token in which he had invested.

Furthermore, the report noted that the U.S. Representative did not reveal his purchase or sale of the LGB token until the Committee launched an investigation into the matter. U.S. Congress Members are required to file timely reports on their purchases and sales of crypto assets, under the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge (STOCK) Act, which Cawthorn breached. 

The Committee argued that Cawthorn made “direct comments” about buying and supporting LGB, though the report ruled out that the Representative did this for personal profit. 

As a Member of the House, Representative Cawthorn must protect the integrity of that institution, and his participation in promotional efforts for the cryptocurrency he owned was inconsistent with that duty,” noted the report.

The total fine amounts to $15,237, $14,237 of which will be transferred to a suitable charitable organization before Dec. 31, 2022. Cawthorn reportedly provided $150,000 to an undisclosed individual who was familiar with the LGB token to buy 180 billion coins. On Dec. 21, the U.S. representative received 180 billion LGB coins in his Coinbase wallet from an undisclosed source. 

He bought LGB Coin to connect with his generation, poke fun at a political opponent, and address the government’s control of currency,” says the report.

Upon receiving the funds in his wallet, his investment increased by $14,237.49 to $164,237.49 Just a week after he bought the coins, LGB Coin announced a partnership with NASCAR driver Brandon Brown, but the association withdrew the approval for the sponsorship a month later. 

Congressman Madison Cawthorn often trades cryptocurrencies. He reported over a dozen of crypto trades this year, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Solana.