2024 US elections: Donald Trump’s campaign to begin accepting donations through cryptocurrency

Donald Trump's campaign is now accepting cryptocurrency donations through a fundraising page on Coinbase, including Bitcoin, Ether, US Dollar Coin, Shiba Inu Coin, and Dogecoin.

Written By Alka Jain
First Published22 May 2024
Former US President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. (AFP)
Former US President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. (AFP)

With an aim to create a “crypto army” ahead of election day, Donald Trump's presidential campaign on Tuesday announced that it will start accepting donations through cryptocurrency, a digital asset that can be traded over the internet without relying on the global banking system. 

Trump campaign has already introduced a fundraising page that enables "any federally permissible donor" to contribute to its political committees using any crypto asset supported by the Coinbase cryptocurrency exchange, AP reported. 

Currently, Trump's campaign is accepting various popular cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin, Ether US Dollar Coin, and the low-value coins that tend to be popular with Internet personalities like Shiba Inu Coin, and Dogecoin. Notably, billionaire Elon Musk is fan of the latter two coins, traded on markets as DOGE and SHIB. 

Its not yet clear if the Trump campaign will retain the cryptocurrency or sell it immediately, as well as what fees might be incurred during liquidation. Although the campaign intends to comply with US election laws, the anonymous nature of cryptocurrencies can complicate the verification of the source of the funds. 

The former US President has already received millions in cryptocurrency personally through his Trump Digital Trading Cards non-fungible token projects and his MAGA coin released last August, as per AP reports. 

“Crypto is nonpartisan and moves money forward because its cheaper and faster. The Coinbase platform is open to all candidates this election season,” Coinbase spokeswoman Julia Krieger told The Associated Press

The presidential campaign for independent candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is also accepting bitcoin donations, while Joe Biden's campaign team did not respond to AP's queries whether it is also welcoming contributions through cryptocurrency. 

While some states prohibit cryptocurrency donations in state elections under current campaign finance laws, the Federal Election Commission permits committees to accept bitcoin as contributions.

A 2014 advisory opinion from the commission determined that bitcoin qualifies as "money or anything of value" under the law. Political committees are advised to value bitcoin contributions based on its market value at the time the contribution is received.

 

(With AP inputs) 

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