Rand Paul, the libertarian senator from Kentucky, is running for president. On Tuesday he made an announcement that his supporters have the option of making donations to his campaign using the digital currency Bitcoin.
In May, 2014, the Federal Elections Commission approved an advisory opinion that found campaigns could accept Bitcoin donations subject to valuation and reporting procedures.
Rand Paul’s website Stand With Rand will certainly accept traditional payment methods as well, such as credit cards and the online service PayPal. However, so far he remains the first declared candidate in the 2016 race to fund his White House bid with digital currency.
The candidate was in his home state of Kentucky to launch his 2016 White House bid. The campaign website went live to coincide with the launch. According to the information posted on the website’s donation page, individuals are allowed to contribute up to $2,700 per election cycle.
The transactions are being handled by BitPay, which means the candidate may not be holding onto any of the Bitcoin supporters donate. BitPay offers the option to immediately convert payments into dollars, which are deposited into a conventional bank account. Mr. Rand is exceeding Bitcoin donations at $100. Individuals who want to give more than that amount have to pay using credit cards or the online service PayPal.
Rand Paul’s campaign slogan is: “Defeat the Washington Machine.” Being a libertarian, he supports a flat income tax, cutting government spending to balance the budget, decreasing the authority of the Federal Reserve and preserving personal liberties.
In the past, the candidate expressed excitement about the possibility that digital currency could potentially be a substitution for credit cards. He said that if a number of big box retailers, like Wal-Mart, could put their stock behind it, he would be interested in investing. In that case, the currency could do to credit cards what Netflix did to Blockbuster, he added.
Rand Paul is expected to make monetary policy and the malignant influence of the Federal Reserve a major theme of his 2016 campaign for president.