Arizona senator pushes to recognize Bitcoin as legal tender

If the proposed legislation is successful, Arizona will become the first state in the United States to officially recognize Bitcoin as a legal currency.
Kavita Verma
Bitcoin and US currency
Bitcoin and US currency

Stanislav Palamar/iStock  

Wendy Rogers, the State Senator in Arizona, has introduced bills to the state legislature for the second time to legalize Bitcoin in the state. Rogers also allows state agencies to accept cryptocurrency as a standard method for sending and receiving payments. 

If the proposed legislation is successful, Arizona will become the first state in the United States to officially recognize Bitcoin as a legal currency. This would have significant implications for the use and acceptance of bitcoin within the state. Not only would individuals and businesses be able to use bitcoin to pay debts, taxes, and other financial obligations, but state agencies would also be able to accept it as payment.

People believe in Bitcoin’s potential

Even though Bitcoin's value has declined by 60% from its all-time high in the past year, many still believe in the cryptocurrency's future potential.

Transactions currently conducted using U.S. dollars would be able to be done with bitcoin as well. This means that businesses and individuals can use bitcoin to pay for goods and services, taxes, bills, and other financial obligations. This would be a significant step toward mainstream acceptance and adoption of bitcoin as a legitimate currency.

The bill specifically defines bitcoin as a decentralized, peer-to-peer digital currency. This means that it operates on a network of computers rather than being controlled by a central authority such as a government or a financial institution. Transactions on the Bitcoin network are recorded on a public ledger called the Bitcoin blockchain. New units of bitcoin are generated through a process called mining, which involves solving complex mathematical problems. The mining process ensures the integrity of the network and controls the supply of new bitcoins.

Ukraine also legalized bitcoin, in addition to other cryptocurrencies, in February last year. 

The proposed bill, the "Acceptance of Cryptocurrency Bill," allows state agencies to sign agreements with cryptocurrency issuers to accept it as a method for paying taxes, rent, fees, penalties, and other financial obligations. This is the second time that Senator Wendy Rogers has introduced legislation to make bitcoin a legal form of currency in Arizona; the previous bill was introduced in January 2022 but did not pass. 

Despite the bill not passing in the past, the success of El Salvador in adopting bitcoin as a legal tender has shown the potential for growth and investment in the country. Furthermore, actions taken by other states, such as Texas, New Hampshire, Missouri, and Mississippi, show a growing interest in the benefits of bitcoin among U.S. states. As the adoption of bitcoin continues to grow, the chances of similar bills passing in the future are likely to increase.

Operating independently of a central bank also means that bitcoin is not subject to the same regulations and policies as traditional fiat currencies, making it more resistant to government manipulation. With this bill, Arizona would be taking a step towards recognizing and embracing the decentralized nature of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. It would open new opportunities for businesses and individuals within the state.

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