Cryptocurrency mining for political fundraising? Federal Election Committee to decide

Folake Dosu
October 4, 2018
Updated: January 13, 2021
Folake Dosu
October 4, 2018
Updated: January 13, 2021

cryptocurrency-mining-political-fundraising

Want to financially back a political campaign? If the U.S. Federal Election Committee approves upstart cryptocurrency company Osia Network, LLC’s request to embed mining tools on the FEC website, you may be able to use mining profits to do that, Bitcoinist reports.

Volunteers on this network who agree to set aside a portion of Osia’s computing power to cryptocurrency mining can have the option of directing mining profits toward a political candidate of their choosing in lieu of receiving the profits they have earned.

Once their choices are locked in, volunteers are pooled and their collective computing power is used to mine cryptocurrency, provided that volunteers are logged into the network. As compensation, Osia would take a cut of the mining profits and the rate is independent of both the mining group size and the candidate.

As more states propose allowing cryptocurrency contributions for political campaigns and action committees, this new law could pave the way for more cryptocurrency companies to be involved in political fundraising.

Cryptocurrency related requests are not new to the FEC. In 2014, the committee made a unanimous ruling that political action committees (PACs) were permitted to accept bitcoin donations not exceeding $100. Hailed as a milestone for cryptocurrency adoption, contributors are now required to provide their name, address, occupation and employer, as with other forms of political donations.

As more states propose allowing cryptocurrency contributions for political campaigns and action committees, this new law could pave the way for more cryptocurrency companies to be involved in political fundraising.

Cryptocurrency has both benefits and drawbacks as a tool for political financing, Bitcoinist opines.

On one hand, it could democratize fundraising so the average individual donors can compete with the big bucks coming from wealthy Super PACS and special interest groups.

On the other hand, a lack of regulation could create a scenario where illicit funds or “dark money” compromise the integrity of political campaign fundraising. 

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