Sen. Cruz Reintroduces Bill to Protect Access to Banking Services by Legal Businesses
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), along with Sens. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) today reintroduced the Financial Institution Customer Protection Act. This bill prohibits federal regulators from using coercion and undue influence to arbitrarily force banking institutions to terminate business relationships with legal businesses solely because those businesses are engaged in industries that the political left disfavors, such as energy producers.
About the bill, Sen. Cruz said:
“Americans’ way of life is under attack from the far left who wants to use the immense powers of the Federal government to coerce banks and other financial institutions to cut off law-abiding businesses and law-abiding Americans’ access to capital and banking services. The American people and small businesses must be protected from this unconstitutional and discriminatory overreach. We cannot allow far-left bureaucrats within the executive branch to get away with pressuring financial institutions to punish customers who do not fall in line with the left’s political whims and leanings. I’m proud to protect the banking choices of the American people and American businesses.”
The full text of the bill may be viewed here. A summary is below:
This bill prohibits a federal banking agency from formally or informally suggesting, requesting, or ordering a bank to terminate either a specific customer account or group of customer accounts. It also bars federal banking agencies from restricting or discouraging banks from entering into or maintaining a banking relationship with a specific customer or group of customers, except for reasons such as suspected terrorism financing or other acts that pose a threat to national security.
Senator Cruz’s History of Fighting for Access to Banking Services:
Throughout his time in the Senate, Sen. Cruz has been a leading advocate for America’s energy producers to ensure they have continued access to capital, even as they face increased threats from climate activists who have advocated for the Federal government to cut off access to banking services by the oil and gas industry.
- In January 2021, Sen. Cruz praised the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency for initially issuing a rule requiring banks to provide fair access to financial services for all legal and creditworthy institutions.
- In May of 2020, Sen. Cruz sent a letter along with his colleagues to President Trump urging him to prevent Wall Street banks that have already benefitted immensely through government-backed loan programs, from discriminating against America’s energy producers.
- In April 2020, Sen. Cruz sent a series of letters in support of Texas energy producers’ and their need to access capital, including a letter that successfully advocated for the Federal Reserve’s expansion of its lending facilities (also, a letter to ensure that the financial assistance authorized by the CARES Act be administered neutrally and free of bias and another letterurging access to credit facilities by domestic energy producers).
- In April 2020, during a meeting with President Trump, Sen. Cruz successfully advocated for small and medium-sized energy producers’ critical access to capital under the COVID emergency relief loan program established by Congress.
The left’s effort to de-bank legal businesses also threatens firearms manufacturers, and in turn, the Second Amendment rights of millions of law-abiding Americans who legally possess and use firearms for self-defense and recreational purposes. Sen. Cruz has also been a tireless advocate to protect access to capital by other industries.
- In April 2020, Sens. Cruz, Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) and a group of 16 of their colleagues sent a letter urging Secretary Mnuchin, Chairman Powell, and Small Business Administration Administrator Jovita Carranza to protect Second Amendment-related industries from discrimination by financial institutions.
- In May 2018, Sen. Cruz sent a letter to the CEOs of Citigroup and Bank of America after the companies attempted to limit business with those who exercise their lawful rights under the Second Amendment and to restrict their customers’ lawful gun purchases and gun sales beyond what federal and state laws require.