May 25, 2021
Firearm Industry Honors Senator Kevin Cramer as Legislator of the Year
NEWTOWN, Conn. — The National Shooting Sports Foundation® (NSSF®), the trade association for the firearm, ammunition, hunting and recreational shooting sports industry, recognized U.S. Senator Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) as the 2020 National Shooting Sports Foundation Legislator of the Year for his determined commitment to protect the firearm industry against discriminatory banking practices and preserving America’s Constitutional rights.
Senator Cramer was instrumental in calling for an end to the discriminatory practices against the firearm industry when he introduced the Freedom Financing Act, S. 821. The legislation was written to prevent financial institutions from accessing taxpayer-subsidized government programs while at the same time denying banking services to lawful and compliant industries. The bill would have prohibited access to the Federal Reserve Discount Window Lending Programs, Federal Deposit Insurance Company and Automated Clearing House Network to any financial institution with over $10 billion in assets, credit card processor and other financial institution which discriminated against the manufacturer and retailer of firearms, ammunition and shooting sports equipment.
“We are honored to present Senator Cramer with the 2020 NSSF Legislator of the Year Award for his bold and determined leadership in the U.S. Senate to end the discrimination against firearm businesses by those in the banking sector,” said Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF Senior Vice President and General Counsel. “Senator Cramer has been an invaluable partner to the firearm and ammunition industry on Capitol Hill. NSSF appreciates his commitment to protect the firearm industry against this unwarranted discrimination and enable businesses to serve their customers not just in North Dakota, but across the nation.”
Senator Cramer’s Freedom Financing Act was just the first of many actions he spearheaded to guard the firearm industry against discriminatory lending practices. Senator Cramer led tough questioning of banking executives under oath to hold them accountable for their policy decisions to benefit from taxpayer protections and at the same time deny a Constitutionally-protected industry from banking services. Senator Cramer worked closely with the White House and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency to publish the Fair Access Banking Rule, that was finalized by the Trump administration, only to be canceled by the Biden administration.
Undeterred, Senator Cramer introduced the Fair Access to Banking Act, S. 563 this year, that would require banks to provide access to services, capital, and credit based on the objective risk assessment of individual customers, rather than subjective broad-based decisions affecting whole categories or classes of customers.
The Fair Access to Banking Act would stop corporate banks from picking winners and losers based on executives’ personal politics. It also protects banks from outside pressure by special interest groups seeking to use the banks as a political weapon to advance their agenda. It currently has 31 co-sponsors.
NSSF is the trade association for the firearm industry. Its mission is to promote, protect and preserve hunting and the shooting sports. Formed in 1961, NSSF has a membership of thousands of manufacturers, distributors, firearm retailers, shooting ranges, sportsmen’s organizations and publishers nationwide. For more information, log on to www.nssf.org.