It was one of the most hated programs in the Obama White House, and Biden has cleared the path for it’s comeback, by shredding Trump’s “Fair Access Rule”.
Very few people would know what “Operation Choke Point” was in the waning days the Obama admin. The Democrat initiative empowered government regulators to target legal businesses who had broken no laws. These businesses were only guilty of angering the Democrats. Gun Shops, Firearms dealers, payday lenders and more could be “choked off” by the Federal Deposit Insurance Company’s guidance. Forbes contributor Norbert Michel, said it was “an egregious affront to the rule of law.”
It was nothing short of a massive, over-reaching government stepping on and crushing businesses it didn’t like. Law abiding, legal, American businesses that just didn’t fit the progressive-socialist narrative. Early in his Presidential term, Donald Trump put a halt to “Operation Choke Point” in August 2017 according to Politico. Unfortunately, Congress never passed a bill to make such an actions illegal in the future.
Trump’s Last Minute Defense of American Businesses: Fair Access
President Trump’s administration in a last-minute effort to safeguard the American people from this kind of immoral action issued the “Fair Access Rule” through the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. The rule doesn’t allow for financial institutions to make blanket decisions based on “entire categories of customers without conducting individual risk assessments”.
“When a large bank decides to cut off access to charities or even embassies serving dangerous parts of the world or companies conducting legal businesses in the United States that support local jobs and the national economy, they need to show their work and the legitimate business reasons for doing so,” said Acting Comptroller of the Currency Brian P. Brooks.
“As Comptrollers and staff in previous administrations have made clear in speeches, guidance, and testimony, banks should not terminate services to entire categories of customers without conducting individual risk assessments. It is inconsistent with basic principles of prudent risk management to make decisions based solely on conclusory or categorical assertions of risk without actual analysis. Moreover, elected officials should determine what is legal and illegal in our country.”
Kelsey Bolar wrote for the Federalist that under Operation Choke Point,
“Federal regulators instructed banks to do the opposite — to openly discriminate against entire industries the Obama administration found objectionable.”
“Weaponizing the power of banking regulators at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and the Office of Comptroller of the Currency, the Obama administration realized it could block entire industries from the banking system that it didn’t like. This made it difficult — if not impossible — for politically unfavored businesses such as gun sellers and short-term lenders to operate,” she wrote.
“Essentially, by using the power of federal banking regulators to intimidate banks from providing their services to these industries, the administration choked off their access to the financial system, leaving them paying more for essential banking services, or unable to use a bank at all.”
…Paused By Biden-Harris
In the first days of the Biden-Harris regime a “pause” was issued on publication of the OCC’s rule change adding the “Fair Access Rule” to codified regulations. In a statement they wrote “Pausing publication of the rule in the Federal Register will allow the next confirmed Comptroller of the Currency to review the final rule and the public comments the OCC received, as part of an orderly transition,” read the Jan. 28 notice. In some sort of conciliatory fashion they added the “OCC’s long-standing supervisory guidance stating that banks should avoid termination of broad categories of customers without assessing individual customer risk remains in effect,”
The truth of the matter is very plain to see however, Operation Choke Point showed Biden that regulatory power over the banks is a hammer that he can use to bludgeon the political enemies of the left. Biden and the puppeteers controlling him are loathe to give it up and are hoping to do so quietly without Americans noticing.
MAKE SURE YOU NOTICE. OR YOUR BUSINESS COULD BE NEXT.