Lightning has struck the 2020 U.S. presidential campaign.
A new super PAC, Humanity Forward Fund (Humanity FWD), launched this week in support of Andrew Yang’s bid for the 2020 presidential seat. Spearheaded by a handful of bitcoin faithfuls, the super PAC will accept bitcoin donations through the Lightning Network in partnership with OpenNode, marking both the first Bitcoin-specific super PAC and the first time Lightning has been used to help fund a political campaign.
“HumanityFWD has partnered with OpenNode on the ‘21 DAYS OF BITCOIN FOR THE 21st CENTURY’ fundraising challenge — to celebrate the launch of the Humanity Forward Fund and to get Andrew Yang elected President! From July 25th to August 14th we will be EXCLUSIVELY accepting Bitcoin donations via OpenNode!” the initiative’s website reads.
Following the 21-day trial, the super PAC will accept fiat donations, as well.
Other sections of the website laud Yang’s self-named “Freedom Dividend.” This mandate, promising each American over 18 years old a universal basic income of $1,000 a month, has become the primary pillar of Yang’s campaign, buttressed by the candidate’s views on the threat that automation, AI and other technological innovations poses to the modern American labor landscape.
Yang is also an outspoken proponent of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. The presidential hopeful was a keynote at Consensus 2019, and he began accepting bitcoin for his campaign over a year ago. His website also has an entire page devoted to his platform’s stance on crypto regulations and consumer protections therein.
Bitcoin is no stranger to the U.S. political scene. A handful of candidates have accepted it over the years, either directly or through BitPay’s payment portal. Andrew Hemingway, a then-candidate for the New Hampshire governorship, was reportedly the first to do so in 2014, and Rand Paul became the first presidential candidate to open his campaign’s war chest to bitcoin in his 2016 run.