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North Carolina Bans Crypto for Electoral Donations

In the USA, the Federal Election Commission in 2014 allowed candidates for federal office to accept Bitcoin donations.

However, U.S state campaign finance offices are free to set their own rules for state election candidates.

Thus, the Electoral Campaign Finance Board of North Carolina will not allow election candidates to accept crypto donations in order to fund their campaigns.

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, in which he suggested how they should take into account these donations.

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.

The response this month came from the Executive Director of the Council of State, Kim Westbrook Strach, who justified the rejection. 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 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 spokesman for Democracy North Carolina, had already had the opportunity to express his opinion on the matter, saying that, in order to receive electoral donations in cryptocurrencies, compliance with the requirement to disclose the source should also be guaranteed.

There have been problems with cryptocurrency donations in other American states as well, such as Kansas and Missouri.

In 2017 the state of Kansas also declined a request to accept cryptocurrency donations.

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.

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