- The Washington Times - Friday, May 30, 2014

The House of Representatives passed an amendment Thursday to stop all federal funding to be used for the Department of Justice’s Operation Choke Point, an anti-fraud operation that was found to be cutting off legitimate businesses from their banking lines.

“This is a major victory for consumers, law-abiding businesses, and anyone who believes in due process and restraint of government encroachment,” said the Community Financial Services Association of America, a trade group opposed to the operation, in a statement Friday. “Additionally, our banking system benefits as it will not be put in the position to police customers or make judgments about the political popularity of businesses and industries.”

The amendment was brought to the floor by Rep. Blane Luetkemeyer, a Republican from Missouri, who is a member of the House Financial Services Committee and is vice chairman of the House Small Business Committee. The amendment was sponsored by three democrats and two more republicans.

The voice vote came as part of the debate on the annual spending bill for the Justice Department and needs Senate approval to become law.

A House panel Thursday said the Obama Administration has been using Operation Choke Point to target and “choke out” businesses it finds objectionable, from gun dealers and payday lenders to drug paraphernalia sellers and porn merchants.

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