The Kentucky House of Representatives passed House Bill 175 (the the Firearm Industry Nondiscrimination Act) by a wide margin, 73-21, Wednesday. The bill seeks to prevent discrimination against firearm businesses. Specifically, KY House Bill 175 prevents financial institutions and government from discriminating against gun businesses.
KY House Bill 175 Protects Gun Businesses
Kentucky becomes the latest state attempting to protect gun laws and businesses at the local level in the face of an anti-gun White House. Rep. Savannah Maddox’s bill prevents banks and government groups from refusing to engage in business or “otherwise discriminate” against retailers, distributors and even manufacturers, reported the Lexington Herald Leader.
The bill fights unlawful government initiatives such as Operation Choke Point. The federal government allegedly pressured financial institutions to quietly squeeze gun companies, denying them service.
“Allowing financial discrimination against the firearms industry poses just as much of a threat as the people who seek to exercise their Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms as it does to the entities that supply the goods that enable them to do so,” Maddox told the Lexington Herald Leader.
While the bill is a win for Kentucky gun businesses, the Kentucky Banking Association (KBA) pushed back. After fighting for different language, its representatives remained disturbed as Ketuckians fought to prevent financial discrimination.
“No, we’re not comfortable with it,” said Debra Stamper, general counsel, KBA. “The language there now is better than the language that was before, but we’re not ever going to be for a bill like that for a number of reasons.”
But NRA-ILA released a statement praising the bill. Both the National Shooting Sports Foundation and Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation also supported the measure.
“This bill does not prevent any bank or financial institution from making standard business decisions; nor does it preclude them from making legitimate determinations pertaining to credit worthiness or credit risk,” reported NRA-ILA. “It does, however, stipulate that financial institutions may not implement a policy of discriminating against the firearm industry at large.”
The bill now heads the to Kentucky Senate for further consideration. We expect the Republican-held Senate to approve the measure.