Measure to prevent discrimination against the gun industry passes the House

HB 175 Sponsor Savannah Mattox, R-Dry Ridge, with Primary Co-sponsor Representative Mark Hart, R- Falmouth during the 2020 legislative session.

FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – The House of Representatives passed a bill intended to reduce discriminatory practices against the firearm industry.  The measure is sponsored by Representative Savannah Maddox of Dry Ridge.

“A decade ago, the Obama Administration implemented ‘Operation Chokepoint.’ Under this initiative, the Department of Justice sought to discourage banks from doing business with the firearm industry,” Maddox said. “While this initiative was discontinued in 2017, financial institutions have continued to engage in discriminatory practices by refusing to conduct business with the firearm industry.”

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“We have seen instances in Winchester, Murray, Crestwood, and Frankfort where establishments have been turned down for financing by large banking institutions and credit card processors refuse to work with companies associated with the firearm industry.”

HB 175 will prevent discriminatory practices against firearm and ammunition manufacturers as well as retailers, distributors, shooting ranges and other entities within the firearm industry by making it unlawful for financial institutions in Kentucky to have policies that discriminate against our 2nd amendment rights.

“Allowing financial institutions to discriminate against the firearms industry poses just as much of a threat to the people who seek to exercise their 2nd Amendment right to keep and bear arms as it does to the entities that supply the goods to which enable them to do so.”

HB 175 is now in the Senate, where it is expected to be considered in the upcoming weeks of the 2021 general session.