The release of a mugshot featuring Donald Trump, amidst his ongoing criminal case in Georgia related to the 2020 election, caused a significant spike in the prices of his nonfungible tokens (NFTs). This boost in value was observed for NFTs featuring Trump's image, particularly his line of digital trading cards initially introduced in December 2022.
NFT marketplace OpenSea reported that the floor price of Trump's digital trading cards surged by over 62%, rising from 0.138 to 0.224 Ether on August 24. This surge coincided with the public release of Trump's mugshot, showcasing him in a defiant pose following his surrender to the Fulton County Sheriff's Office. This mugshot holds historical significance as the first of a current or former U.S. president facing criminal charges.
The former president, who has been active on his Truth Social platform after being banned from Twitter in 2021, posted the mugshot on his platform, marking his return to social media after more than two years.
Trump's legal troubles in Georgia involve allegations of him and 18 associates participating in a racketeering scheme to undermine the 2020 election results. While he was released on a $200,000 bond on August 24, he still faces federal charges in the District of Columbia related to attempts to overturn the election. Moreover, he is entangled in a classified documents case by the Justice Department and a New York criminal case concerning falsified business records tied to a payment to Stormy Daniels.
The relationship between politicians and cryptocurrencies has been noteworthy, with Trump expressing skepticism about Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in the past, yet holding a substantial amount of Ethereum. President Biden, in contrast, has taken steps towards regulating digital assets while facing criticism from both lawmakers and industry players.
This notable event led to a flurry of creative responses within the crypto community, including adding "laser eyes" to Trump's image and creating memes.
While Trump is a frontrunner for the Republican Party's nomination in the 2024 presidential election, his absence from the initial party debate on August 23 raised eyebrows. Other candidates, including Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is considered a top Republican candidate, have also entered the digital currency discourse, promising to ban central bank digital currencies if elected. The 2024 election is increasingly seen as a "referendum on fiat currency," according to some commentators.
The incident underlines the intersection of politics, celebrity, and NFT markets, showcasing how external events can impact the value of digital assets in novel and unexpected ways.