Still Counting the Results: Bitcoin May Have Larger Voice in Political Campaigns
The Federal Election Commission (FEC) will be ruling on contributions to US political campaigns on April 23.
The Federal Election Commission (FEC) will be ruling on contributions to US political campaigns on April 23. Since no law prevents using crypto-currency in political campaigns, people like Texas Governor Candidate Greg Abbott and the Libertarian party have already accepted donations via Bitcoin.
Two draft advisory opinions from PAC Make Your Laws were posted on the FEC’s website available for public comment before today’s meeting.
The first draft, posted April 16, more or less would allow political campaigns to accept Bitcoin not as cash donations but rather in-kind donations, use the bitcoins to pay campaign bills, and would require the donor to reveal their identification before the donation is accepted. Donations would be sent to the PAC’s bitcoin digital wallet account, where it can be spent or sold later.
The second draft, posted April 17, is a lot harsher on bitcoin. Donors would be restricted to giving a maximum $100 worth of BTC per election cycle. All bitcoins accepted would have to be converted to cash before being utilized. This cash has to be deposited to the PAC contribution account.
With a $100 limit, it’s hard to say that bitcoin will make an earth-shattering impact in political campaigns. Rather, this may just be a jolt to the Bitcoin community as they see politicians accept this currency, the same currency that lends itself as a voice of freedom from centralized banks.
The FEC deadlocked in a similar vote last year.
Sai (his legal name), who runs Make Your Laws, is optimistic that the commission will approve the request filed by his company. He argues that since Bitcoin is traded, it can be treated like an in-kind contribution like a bond or stock. Make Your Laws is a non-partisan group encouraging the use of technology to give individuals a greater say in elections and democracy.
Cointelegraph will follow up on this story as it unfolds.