Amidst the backdrop of a chaotic presidential election between Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump, the US Federal Election Commission is quietly debating whether to reclassify how it treats bitcoin donations.
In May 2014, the FEC greenlit bitcoin donations to political campaigns, classifying them as an “in-kind” contribution in response to a request by a Make Your Laws PAC, a North Carolina organization. At the time, the agency put a cap of $100 per contributor, an amount that corresponds to whatever the current market price is at the time of the donation.
By ruling that bitcoin donations are in-kind contributions, the FEC placed the digital currency in the same category of stocks or other kinds of valuable assets. This was largely driven by the fact that bitcoins can’t be deposited into a bank account. Instead, a campaign can hold on to any bitcoins received until it decide to sell them, at which time a 10-day deadline for depositing the funds kicks in.
Public records, however, show that the FEC is rethinking this approach, at least in part.
According to a draft agenda from 15th September, the FEC is in the earliest stages of considering whether to continue that “in-kind”