Donald Trump announces his campaign will accept cryptocurrency

Former United States President Donald Trump, currently facing criminal charges in four jurisdictions, has confidently announced that his 2024 presidential campaign will accept cryptocurrency donations.

In a bold move on May 21, the Trump 2024 campaign unveiled a fundraising page that allows eligible donors to contribute using cryptocurrencies via Coinbase Commerce. The website prominently features logos for Bitcoin, Ether, Dogecoin (DOGE), Shiba Inu, USD Coin, Solana, and 0x (ZRX). The announcement took aim at Senator Elizabeth Warren’s attacks on cryptocurrency, alleging without evidence that she is acting as President Joe Biden’s “official surrogate” in Congress.

During a May 8 dinner for supporters who purchased a nonfungible token featuring his mugshot from his surrender at a Georgia jail, Trump assured attendees they could make donations to his campaign in crypto. With less than six months until Election Day, Trump is the presumptive Republican nominee for U.S. President in 2024, poised to challenge President Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee.

On May 15, Trump accepted President Biden’s challenge to meet for televised debates on June 27 and September 10, to be aired on CNN and ABC, respectively. Though terms are yet to be finalized, these debates could be the first time the two candidates face each other in person since the 2020 election, where Trump was defeated by Biden.

Despite accepting crypto donations, Trump’s campaign website did not highlight digital assets or blockchain on its ‘issues’ page at the time of publication. President Biden has seldom spoken publicly about crypto but did sign an executive order in 2022 to establish a regulatory framework for digital assets.

Trump announced his acceptance of crypto donations as the jury in his New York criminal trial prepared for deliberations, expected next week. The former president must appear in a Manhattan courtroom for allegedly falsifying business documents related to a $130,000 payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels. Additionally, he faces charges in Georgia and the District of Columbia for allegedly attempting to overturn the 2020 election results, and in Florida for allegedly mishandling classified documents.

In 2021, after his presidency, Trump called Bitcoin a “scam” and expressed his preference for the U.S. dollar as the “currency of the world.” However, as Trump emerged as the likely Republican candidate, his rivals Vivek Ramaswamy and Ron DeSantis focused on digital asset policies, particularly central bank digital currencies (CBDCs). Trump declared at a January 2024 campaign event that he would never allow the creation of a CBDC in the United States.

The crypto donations are timely as political action committees (PACs) supporting Trump have reportedly been covering some of his legal expenses.

In February, a judge ordered $355 million in disgorgement against Trump and his companies, finding them liable for fraud. In January, a New York judge ordered Trump to pay over $83 million related to a defamation lawsuit brought by author E. Jean Carroll. In May 2023, a jury also found Trump liable for sexual assault and defamation against Carroll, ordering $5 million in damages.


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