As Bitcoin is gaining popularity with the masses, politicians want their piece of the pie. Many of them are even starting to fund their political campaigns with cryptocurrencies.
In 2014, the Republican Andrew Hemingway became the first American politician to accept Bitcoin as donation for a political campaign.
According to CNBC, Hemingway started to accept the digital currency because of the high demand among his supporters. The then 32 year old tech entrepreneur raised 20% of his campaign money through Bitcoin.
“I believe at the time that I ran, [New Hampshire] had more of what they call ‘bitcoin billionaires’ than any other state in the country,” Hemingway said.
New Hamshire has always been a hot spot in the cryptocurrency movement. It is home to the oldest bitcoin meetup and to many bitcoin-friendly merchants.
CNBC proposes that this is due to the “active and growing libertarian migration to New Hampshire” coming from the “Free State Project”. This initiative, founded in 2001, aims to bring 20,000 libertarians to the state.
Many new politicians are following the footsteps of Mr. Hemingway. Austin Peterson from Missouri, for example, received 24 bitcoins in contribution this year. This is worth more than $240,000.
Patrick Nelson, a New York democrat, also announced this summer that he was accepting Bitcoin donations for his campaign.
Other candidates who accept Bitcoin include Brian Forde of California and Kelli Ward, from Arizona.