A state senator has introduced a bill in Arizona that seeks to make bitcoin a legal tender. Although the US federal law doesn’t allow the states to create their currencies, the bill may spark an interesting discussion.
- State Senator Wendy Rogers, a Republican, has moved a draft bill numbered SB 1341 that seeks to accord bitcoin the status of transactional currency or legal tender. If the bill is discussed in the state senate and house of representative for which a date is not fixed yet, the Grand Canyon state will be the first US state to consider this development.
- The bill introduced by Sen. Rogers defines legal tender as
“Any medium of exchange that is authorized by the United States Constitution or Congress for the payment of debts, public charges, taxes, and dues.”
- It goes on:
“Bitcoin means the decentralized, peer-to-peer digital currency in which a record of transactions is maintained on the Bitcoin blockchain and new units of currency are generated by the computational solution of 21 mathematical problems and that operates independently of a central bank.”
- In September last year, the senator had tweeted that she wanted to make Arizona a crypto-friendly state.
“I am going to work to help make Arizona crypto-friendly.”
- Rogers was appointed to the 3-member Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Study Committee on December 31, 2021. The term of the committee will end on December 31, 2022, when it is supposed to submit its report.
- The move to introduce the bill to make bitcoin a legal tender is likely to trigger a fresh round of debate in the country around bitcoin’s greater acceptance and adoption.
- According to a survey report in September 2021, 30% of swing-state voters said they wanted the legalization of cryptocurrencies. The survey reported the number of residents who favored bitcoin as a legal tender in Texas and Wisconsin was 37%, compared to 25% in Arizona, one of the 10 swing states that figured in the survey conducted by the London-based polling and market research firm Redfield & Wilton Strategies.
- At the moment, El Salvador is the only country that has accepted bitcoin as a legal tender. However, former Tonga parliamentarian Lord Fusitua has recently claimed that Tonga would adopt bitcoin as a legal tender by November this year.
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