by Terresa Monroe-Hamilton | August 19, 2017 4:01 pm
This is excellent news. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the Department of Justice just put an end to the hateful and discriminatory Operation Choke Point that Eric Holder and Barack Obama put into action. This was the anti-fraud initiative started under the Obama administration that many Republicans argued was used to target gun retailers and other businesses that Democrats found objectionable. Now, it is no more. Yes!
The program cracked down on conservatives and especially small businesses and their financial dealings… primarily in the areas of short-term lending and the firearms industries. It was a crackdown on politically disfavored groups and extremely oppressive. “Operation Choke Point was an Obama Administration initiative that destroyed legitimate businesses to which that Administration was ideologically opposed (e.g., firearms dealers) by intimidating financial institutions into denying banking services to those businesses,” GOP lawmakers wrote. That’s exactly what it did.
From The Washington Free Beacon:
The Department of Justice announced in a letter on Friday that it had ended all activities associated with Operation Choke Point.
In a written letter to the House Judiciary Committee, Assistant Attorney General Stephen Boyd called the program “a misguided initiative conducted during the previous administration” and promised the DOJ was no longer pursuing it.
“All of the Department’s bank investigations conducted as part of Operation Choke Point are now over, the initiative is no longer in effect, and it will not be undertaken again,” Boyd said.
The DOJ went on to say it would no longer engage in investigations motivated by “political preferences” and specifically said it would not target the financial dealings of otherwise lawful members of the short-term lending and firearms industries.
“The Department is committed to bringing enforcement actions only where warranted by the facts and the applicable law, without regard to political preferences,” Boyd said in the letter. “This approach honors the Department’s fundamental obligation to focus on the lawbreakers that deserve our undivided attention, and thereby protect the American public from fraud and other criminal activity. We reiterate that the Department will not discourage the provision of financial services to lawful industries, including businesses engaged in short-term lending and firearms-related activities.”
This is just one more awful thing that Obama implemented that President Trump is eradicating. House Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) cheered the DOJ’s decision and blamed the Obama administration for creating the program and rightly so: “We applaud the Trump Justice Department for decisively ending Operation Choke Point,” he said. “The Obama administration created this ill-advised program to suffocate legitimate businesses to which it was ideologically opposed by intimidating financial institutions into denying banking services to those businesses. Targeted industries, such as firearms dealers, were presumed guilty by the Obama Justice Department until proven innocent, and many businesses are still facing the repercussions of this misguided program. This is no way for law enforcement to operate and runs counter to principles enshrined in our Constitution.”
Gun rights activists and Second Amendment proponents are thrilled with this and they should be. After a very tough week, this is welcome news. The NRA deeply and sincerely thanked President Trump for yet again keeping his word. No longer will the federal government be allowed to pick winners and losers in the marketplace and that’s the way it should be. This program did tremendous harm to small businesses across the country. It’s end is welcome relief to many business owners out there and a definite win for the Trump administration and the DOJ.
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