A California state regulator may be looking into overturning a ban on cryptocurrency donations to political campaigns that has been in place since 2018.
According to your May 2022 schedule, The California Fair Political Practices Commission, or FPPC, has scheduled a “pre-debate” Thursday on the use of cryptocurrency for political campaign contributions in the state. The commission said it will consider drafting amendments to its regulations requiring that “no contribution may be made or received in cryptocurrency.”
In September 2018, The FPPC voted to ban both the sending and receiving of cryptocurrency contributions to political campaigns in the state of California, due to concerns that donations “could be used to circumvent contribution limits and bans, or by foreign entities to contribute to campaigns”. The director of communications of the FPPC, Jay Wierenga, told Cointelegraph that the commission “looks at trends and [trata] to get ahead of them,” citing a March opinion in which its legal division said that a campaign selling non-fungible tokens to raise funds must record “the full amount received” as a “reportable contribution.”
“This has been on our radar since the end of last year,” Wierenga said. “The cryptocurrency [ha] obviously grown in use and visibility since 2019. So the Commission wants to analyze and determine if there are any changes to be made, or not.”
According to Wierenga, the current ban on cryptocurrency contributions to political campaigns has not affected candidates running for election in California at the federal level, only state and local ones. For example, Aarika Rhodes, an elementary school teacher running to represent California’s 32nd congressional district, currently held by Democrat Brad Sherman, has openly called on her supporters to donate Bitcoin (BTC) via the Lighting Network:
Our campaign has officially adopted Lighting for campaign contributions.âš¡ï¸
This revolutionary technology creates accessibility and looks towards the future. I am excited to provide this option to our supporters across all 50 states. #bitcoin
— Aarika for CA-32 (@AarikaRhodes) November 30, 2021
Our campaign has officially adopted Lighting for contributions.
This revolutionary technology creates accessibility and looks to the future. I am delighted to offer this option to our supporters in all 50 states.
Commissions and other government bodies in the United States are responsible for determining whether bans on cryptocurrency donations for state and local political campaigns apply. The South Carolina House ethics committee said in 2018 that the definition of a political campaign contribution did not include cryptocurrency, and Colorado limited the amount of cryptocurrency donations to the same levels as traditional money.
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