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North Carolina Bans Crypto Donations for Political Campaigns

The electoral campaign finance board of North Carolina will not allow election candidates to accept crypto donations in order to fund their campaigns.

Although the Federal Election Commission in 2014 allowed candidates for federal office to accept Bitcoin donations, U.S state campaign finance offices are free to set their own rules for state election candidates.

A problem of valuation

A Republican candidate running in the 2018 U.S midterm Legislature elections, Emmanuel Wilder, asked the North Carolina State Board of Elections and Ethics Enforcement earlier this year if he could accept cryptocurrency or Bitcoin donations for his campaign funds. He also made suggestions as to how these donations could be valued, no doubt expecting this to be an issue the state would consider.

In an email to the elections board Wilder said:

“I know that this is new, but there is a great opportunity to show that North Carolina is truly open to new emerging markets.”

Kim Westbrook Strach, State Board of Elections Executive Director for North Carolina, responded to Wilder this month. She outlined its refusal as the monetary limits detailed in state campaign finance regulations are provided in U.S dollars, and cryptocurrencies cannot be reliably valued. Westbrook Strach said:

“We do not have the confidence that we could adequately regulate contributions to a political campaign in North Carolina in the form of cryptocurrency.”

Wilder replied with his disappointment, but appreciation for the decision expressing how blockchain and other technology can improve the operation of businesses and public institutions and predicting:

“Although it might not be today, there will be a day when this technology will have a place in the political process.”

The electoral campaign finance board of North Carolina will not allow election candidates to accept donations in Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies.

Anonymity is also an issue for donations

The pseudo-anonymous nature of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is also a consideration for electoral campaigns and associated finance regulators in the U.S. Jen Jones, a spokesperson for regional campaign finance watchdog Democracy North Carolina gave her advice prior to the decision. Jones said the State Board should consider, “whether it’s possible for candidates to receive campaign donations via cryptocurrency while also complying with state disclosure requirements.”

The state of Kansas also declined a request to accept cryptocurrency donations in 2017.

In June 2018 a Republican candidate in Missouri had to refuse a donation of $130,276 worth of Bitcoin as it exceeded the $5400 individual donation limit. The candidate, Austin Petersen, is one of a handful of U.S politicians looking to cryptocurrency as a source of campaign funding.

Do you think cryptocurrencies should now be accepted as a source of election campaign funding?

Images courtesy of Shutterstock

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Chinko Project Asks Reddit How To Best Spend Bitcoin Donations

Source: bitcoin

Bitcoinist_Bitcoin Donations

Converting Bitcoin to fiat currency can be a struggle for some individuals, particularly in Africa. Coming up with a way to spend the Bitcoin would be good as well. The Reddit community is coming together with helpful tips and advice on how to use the money as we speak.

This entire story started by one person venting his frustration about automatic Windows 10 updates during a Reddit AMA. As it turns out, he is an anti-poaching pilot in the Central African Bush, and their ULM was lost recently. To replace this missing vital piece of equipment, the person set out to promote a crowdfunding campaign on Reddit, and Bitcoin was among the accepted payment methods.

Reddit Wages In On Bitcoin Conversion Problem

Fast forward to today and the Bitcoin crowdfunding effort has surpassed all expectations. This also brought forth some struggles, as the funds have to be converted to fiat, or a different form of online money that can be used to buy goods and supplies online. That is much easier said than done when living in Central Africa, though.

“Basically, if it’s not possible for us to turn this into donated money. Perhaps we could use it to help buy supplies online. I know I’ll probably be lambasted for not performing the due diligence and research myself.. but things are very hectic around here, and our generators don’t run on Sunday. So the batteries will be losing power soon. If anyone is willing to recommend some online suppliers of tech/gear, that might be suitable for an anti-poaching group. I’d appreciate the input.”

After doing some research into the matter, the bush pilot came back to Reddit and asked for advice on how to use the Bitcoin donations. Converting to fiat currency seems to be a big hurdle, although Coinbase is an option that seems available to them. But the team is also considering getting a Bitcoin debit card, as it would make spending the coins online possible without much friction.

Bitcoin is a very convenient way to move funds around the world, but it remains difficult to cash out cryptocurrency in some areas. Using an online debit card is an option to spend the funds conveniently, but not everything can be purchased online. For real-life expenses requiring cash, an online debit card is no proper solution.

At the same time, this is also an excellent example of how the Bitcoin community works. There is a lot of valid advice being posted on the Reddit thread, although not everything applies to this situation. Through collaboration and open discussion, a solution will be found to help the anti-poacher group out.

What are your thoughts on the Reddit community advice so far? Let us know in the comments below!

Source: Reddit

Images courtesy of Shutterstock, Chinko Project

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Chinko Project Asks Reddit How To Best Spend Bitcoin Donations