NSSF Welcomes Sen. Hagerty’s Protecting Privacy in Purchases Act Introduction

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Mark Oliva


NSSF Welcomes Sen. Hagerty’s Protecting Privacy in Purchases Act Introduction

WASHINGTON, D.C. — NSSF®, The Firearm Industry Trade Association, hails the introduction of S. 4075, the Protecting Privacy in Purchases Act, by U.S. Sen. Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.), which would ban the use of a firearm retailer-specific Merchant Category Code (MCC). The legislation would protect the Second Amendment privacy of firearm and ammunition purchasers from financial service and payment card providers compiling purchase history that has already proven to be exploited by the federal government for political purposes.

The legislation is similar to H.R. 7450, also titled the Protecting Privacy in Purchases Act, an NSSF-supported companion bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. That bill was introduced by U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.), along with Rep. Andy Barr (R-Ky.) and Rep. Richard Hudson (R-N.C).

“The Biden administration has already admitted that it unlawfully used the private firearm purchase data of law-abiding citizens to label them as potential domestic terrorists in a politically-driven gun control scheme,” said Lawrence G. Keane, NSSF Senior Vice President & General Counsel. “Senator Bill Hagerty’s legislation would protect the private financial data of citizens exercising their Constitutional rights to keep and bear arms. No American should be concerned that the federal government is employing this scheme, concocted by gun control cheerleaders, that weaponizes an individual’s finances and their free exercise of Second Amendment rights to wrongly identify them as a criminal-in-waiting. NSSF thanks Senator Hagerty for his principled leadership to stand up for Second Amendment rights and against special interests and big government lawmakers whose goal it is to monitor and deny lawful transactions by law-abiding Americans. Americans should worry about what’s in their wallet, not who’s in their wallet peaking in to see what they are legally buying when exercising their Second Amendment rights.”

The U.S. Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) admitted to U.S. Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) in a letter that it violated the Fourth Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens that protect against illegal search and seizure when it collected the credit card purchase history from banks and credit card companies of individuals who purchased firearms and ammunition in the days surrounding Jan. 6, 2020. Treasury’s FinCEN had no cause, and sought the information without a warrant, to place these law-abiding citizens on a government watchlist only because they exercised their Second Amendment rights to lawfully purchase firearms and ammunition.

The need for a federal policy has become necessary since several states have enacted similar legislation to protect the privacy of firearm and ammunition purchasers, including Kentucky, Wyoming, Indiana, Utah, Florida, Idaho, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, Texas and West Virginia. Several additional states are currently considering similar legislation. California enacted legislation last year requiring the use of a firearm retailer-specific MCC and Colorado is considering legislation that would do the same.