“Operation Choke Point” – Rogue Obama Administration Program Faces House Scrutiny This Week
Already mired in myriad scandals – the IRS, our southern border, Benghazi, etc. – one would presume the Obama Administration reluctant to run a legally and ethically dubious program named “Operation Choke Point.” Yet that’s exactly what this tone-deaf administration has done.
Fortunately, the House of Representatives is paying close attention, and holding several important hearings on the matter this week.
For those still unfamiliar, Operation Choke Point is a program initiated by Eric Holder’s Department of Justice to interrupt – or “choke” – access to private financial resources by entirely legal industries such as firearms sales, ammunition sales, coin dealers and others. If the administration can successfully pressure financial services like banks and third-party payment processors to refuse to do business with those industries, they obviously cannot survive for very long. All the while, none of the targeted industries have even been shown to have violated any laws. Accordingly, it’s a prototypical Obama Administration effort to demonize and target legal business that it happens to dislike.
This week, however, two House committees will bring cleansing public sunlight to this rogue operation. On Tuesday at 10:00 a.m., the House Financial Services Oversight & Investigations Subcommittee will hold a hearing entitled “The Department of Justice’s ‘Operation Choke Point,’” and at 2:00 p.m. the House Financial Services Financial Institution and Consumer Credit Subcommittee will hole its hearing entitled, “Examining Regulatory Relief Proposals for Community Financial Institutions, Part II.” Then, on Thursday at 9:30 a.m., the House Judiciary Regulatory Reform, Commercial and Antitrust Law Subcommittee will hold its hearing entitled “Guilty Until Proven Innocent? A Study of the Proprietary & Legal Authority for the Justice Department’s Operation Choke Point.”
As with other Justice Department and IRS campaigns, Operation Choke Point is characterized by abuse of due process, secrecy and dishonesty. Thankfully, this week’s battery of House hearings will provide some much-needed public scrutiny, and hopefully help end this rogue scheme.