The State of Oregon seems to be pioneering when it comes to cryptocurrency. The Secretary of State proposed a change to the administrative rules concerning campaign finance, which will allow the campaigns to accept donations in cryptocurrency. Although the change is not unique, it does signify an increase in moves by states to promote campaign finance and the acceptance of cryptocurrency as well.
According to Dennis Richardson, Oregon’s Secretary of State, cryptocurrency may have a permanent place in the market.
“Cryptocurrency is here to stay, and Oregon needs to adapt to that reality by allowing this new form of donating. Allowing cryptocurrency to be a part of our elections process is a new and innovative way to expand participation in Oregon elections.”
Those who are interested in the details of the proposal can look over them in the agency’s “Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.” The announcement also noted that the above draft mimics the Federal Elections Commission (FEC) policies, which allow contributions, but not expenditure. While the suggested change is certainly positive, that does not mean that there is no pushback involving the move. Tobias Read, Oregon’s State Treasurer, released a statement expression concern about the move.
“Cryptocurrency is by its nature opaque. Oregonians want clean, transparent, accountable and open elections and the two would seem to be at odds with each other. Those who would like to participate in providing public comments can do so until August 7th.
Further, as previously mentioned, Oregon is not the first state to make such a move. Other states that have already shifted include Colorado and Wisconsin, while Kansas is considering the move.
It is also important to note that there are limits to crypto donations as well. Recently, Austin Petersen, a candidate in Missouri running for the U.S. Senate was ordered by the FEC to return $130,276 worth of donations in Bitcoin because under the regulations, he was capped at $5,400 from a single donor.