Wells Fargo Stands Up to Teacher’s Union: ‘Banks shouldn’t decide which legal products consumers can buy’

Wells Fargo is not caving to the David Hoggs of the world.  At least not yet.  (Photo: AP)

In the wake of the Parkland massacre, corporations have taken it upon themselves to dictate which firearms Americans should be allowed to own. The virtue signaling has been deafening from companies like Dick’s Sporting Goods, Citigroup, and Bank of America, but Wells Fargo has held out against David Hogg and his disciples.

Despite strong pressure from the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), the bank has refused to cut ties with business partners that manufacture firearms.

“Wells Fargo wants schools and communities to be safe from gun violence, but changes to laws and regulations should be determined through a legislative process that gives the American public an opportunity to participate,” the bank said. “We remain firm in our belief that the American public does not want banks to decide which legal products consumers can and cannot buy.”

AFT President Randi Weingarten informed the bank shortly after the Valentine’s Day shooting that the union would no longer use Wells Fargo’s mortgage services to provide home-buying plans to its members as long as the bank maintained its ties with gun makers.

Wells Fargo CEO Tim Sloan told AFT President Randi Weingarten in an April 3 letter obtained by USA TODAY that the best route to combating gun violence “is through the political and legislative process.” Sloan offered to meet with Weingarten, but that meeting never materialized.

SEE ALSO: When Banks Attack: Citigroup’s Anti-Gun Policies May Provide ‘Template’ for Others

Weingarten apparently ignored Sloan’s letter, telling him in her own note, “We can only assume that, in light of your silence and the NRA attacks, you have decided that the NRA business is more valuable to you than students and their educators are.”

USA Today spoke with Weingarten, who was more than happy to explain how she stood up to the gun-funding company: “We essentially said you can have the mortgage business … or you can continue to value guns more than the people who serve in schools and the kids that have been affected by gun violence.”

According to USA Today, Wells Fargo stands to lose around 20,000 mortgages from AFT members. The company held $105 billion in mortgages in the first half of 2016, nearly double that of its closest competitor.

Wells Fargo’s decision to uphold legal and legislative processes stand in stark contrast to other large businesses in recent weeks. Dick’s Sporting Goods removed then destroyed AR-type rifles in its Field & Stream stores. Citigroup is restricting the kinds of firearm-related products its clients can sell and, most recently, Bank of America cut ties with business clients that manufacture military-style rifles for civilian use.

About the author: Jordan Michaels has been reviewing firearm-related products for over four years and enjoying them for much longer. With family in Canada, he’s seen first hand how quickly the right to self-defense can be stripped from law-abiding citizens. He escaped that statist paradise at a young age, married a sixth-generation Texan, and currently lives in Waco. Follow him on Instagram @bornforgoodluck and email him at jordan@gunsamerica.com.

{ 33 comments… add one }
  • bad bob August 24, 2018, 7:09 am

    I hope all with children are reviewing their text books, Especially their history and social studies books. I’m sure you will make record time to their schools to confront them on the out right lies they are teaching them.

  • Andrew N. April 29, 2018, 12:51 am

    Time to switch all my banking / Credit Card business to Wells Fargo. I never liked Citibank much anyway, they used to try to tell me a bill took 3 weeks to get to them and charged late fees. The next bill would show my payment actually made it there in 2-3 days. It happened twice. The second time I took my business elsewhere.

  • robert April 28, 2018, 2:00 pm

    Don’t ban the teacher’s union. Get the AFL-CIO to decertify them. After all they are a subsidiary of the AFL-CIO, and there has to be a much greater membership in the parent union.

  • robert April 28, 2018, 1:58 pm

    Yes, you can cancel your accounts. I was going to do that too. Then I thought about it and decided to do something different.
    1. Tell them what I think about them. Then,
    2. Let any/all accounts go to zero, but don’t close them. I’m sure it costs them money to keep them open.

  • BIGKIELBASSA April 28, 2018, 10:12 am

    I wonder how Weingarten would feel if we banned his teachers Union .

  • bbbs53 April 27, 2018, 4:18 pm

    Bravo Wells Fargo. They were opening accounts for people to bump up their numbers not fund cartels. The management was replaced and policy changed. Now is the time to switch away from the anti gun corporations, the list here is a good start.

  • Tommy Barrios April 27, 2018, 2:13 pm

    This shows how Communism is being spread today, once the Communist Progressive Moron Media gets involved and starts virtue shaming on their basis!
    I saw a list above of companies to start boycotting and complaining to but NOT one Moron Media outlets, those are people we should be calling out and not the consumer companies!
    Thank You!

  • Jim Cargill April 27, 2018, 1:54 pm

    About two weeks ago, I wrote to the American Teachers Federation about this bullying tactic by their President, Ms. Wiengarten. I explained that I could not understand how their President could make a unilateral decision to deprive members of a very popular mortgage loan program based solely on a political principle. Ms. Weingarten did not poll the members. She decided that, since she wants gun control, she will make the decision for the members, depriving them of the program.

    I did not hear back, but am thrilled that WF has stood their ground. I have been a WF customer for 34 years. Yes, they have had some recent problems, but, overall, I believe they are a good institution, with basically sound principles.

  • Rangemaster11B April 27, 2018, 11:36 am

    Wells Fargo has been proven to be a criminal enterprise. They can’ afford to lose any more customers.

    • Luke April 28, 2018, 3:20 pm

      Rangemaster – That’s a pretty pathetic attempt to smear one of the only banks who supports the Constitution. Every bank in the United States is a ‘criminal enterprise’ given their return rates on cd’s.

  • Luke April 27, 2018, 9:58 am

    Anybody with balls enough to at least attempt to make a change, here are some ideas. Ask yourselves how badly you actually depend upon credit cards in general. And, then ask yourselves how badly you actually NEED credit cards from Sears, CitiBank, Home Depot, Menards, Cabela’s, Bass Pro Shops, Walmart, Sam Ash, Lowe’s. . .

    Of course, those cards are convenient and have some nice 0% extended offers. But, how much of a slave do we need to be to these assholes who pander to sportsmen and women with one hand and then support anarchy and loss of liberty with the other? At this point, there’s absolutely no point in contacting your Congressional representatives: they are 90% brain dead to the American people and will not listen to reason. Hell, even republicans hate the president more than they love their country: many would welcome his assassination.
    Vote with your money.

    Bank of America
    P.O Box 15019
    Wilmington, DE 19886-5019

    Bass Pro Shops
    2500 East Kearney
    Springfield, MO 65898

    Capital One
    41550 Wewatta Street
    Denver, CO 80202

    Cabela’s Corporate Office and Headquarters
    1 Cabela Drive
    Sidney, NE 69160

    Menards Corporate Office
    4777 Menard Drive
    Eau Claire, WI 54703

    CitiBank Customer Service
    P.O. Box 6500
    Sioux Falls, SC 57117

    Sears Private Label General Enquiries
    P.O. Box 6275
    Sioux Falls, SD 57117

    Home Depot Credit Services
    P.O. Box 900100
    Louisville, KY 40290-1010

    The Progressive Corporation
    6300 Wilson Mills Road
    Mayfield Village, OH 44143

    Synchrony Bank
    P.O. Box 105972
    Atlanta, GA 30348-5972

    Walmart Corporate Headquarters
    702 SW Eighth Street
    Bentonville, AR 72716

    I will no longer knowingly support anti-gun and anti-hunting credit card providers, retail entities or insurance companies. So far, my personal list includes all Capital One, Citigroup and Bank of America credit cards and financial facilities as well as Progressive and Liberty Mutual insurance products. These include the following credit cards: Menards, Home Depot, Cabela’s, Bass Pro Shops, Sears and others. The financial benefit of these products is not worth the sacrifice of Constitutional liberty. I will not support a political lobby that intentionally champions the loss of my liberty as a American Citizen and a Veteran of the United States armed forces.

    You can cancel account number ______________________ immediately.

    • John L April 27, 2018, 2:42 pm

      Nicely done. When this broke I immediately contacted B of A and BassPro for a response. Got a response from BassPro saying they didn’t know anything about it. No response from B of A. Haven’t cancelled my BassPro card as yet, but looking like that is inevitable. Once that happens BassPro can kiss my business goodbye. Ironically, I bought my last three guns there.

      • Luke April 28, 2018, 3:30 pm

        I’ve just been corresponding with Synchrony Bank (Walmart, Lowe’s, Sam Ash) and asked them flatly if they supported the Constitution or not given Walmart’s knee-jerk reaction to David Hogg. Their response (paraphrased): “We are unable to respond to your question but if you have other questions about your account we would be glad to assist you. Customer service is important to us. . . .bla-bla-bla-bla…

        Amazing how these damned banks can speak for their clientele by provide an international platform to a lying kid with a zero FICO score but have no balls to answer a simple question from a client with FICO north of 800. Incredibly stupid bunch.

    • Christopher Griego April 18, 2020, 9:29 pm

      Thank you for having brains sir. It’s refreshing to see I’m not the only one who sees The whole fuckin picture!!!!

  • Luke April 27, 2018, 9:42 am

    Perspective is always important. Every large bank has skeletons. EVERY. ONE. So don’t be so quick to shoot your mouth off about how Wells Fargo is so much more evil than other banks.

    Right now, Wells Fargo is one of the few banks that actually supports the Constitution. Maybe it’s best to say that differently: VERY FEW BANKS SUPPORT THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. They’re function is capitalism in the absence of regulation and a representative republic. Americans enjoy a very soft standard of living because of this, but at what future cost?

    CitiGroup keeps changing its name but it’s a credit card provider for Home Depot and Sears.
    Bank of America is credit card provider for Bass Pro Shops.
    Capital One is a provider for Cabela’s and Menards.

    Ironic that the very banks that provide monetary instruments to accommodate sportsmen & women are the ones who want those very people to give up the Second Amendment to the Constitution by abusing the First.

    AFT President Randi Weingarten likely doesn’t give a shit about kids spilling her guts to a news outlet like that and not bothering to accept an invitation to discussion. She probably has her sights set on future political aspirationis and used USA Today as just a stepping stone to get there. Seems like she’s just as credible as the ‘war on women’ and the ‘glass ceiling.’

    Also, the American Federation of Teachers is ONLY concerned about its financial welfare: the union bosses likely saw a better deal somewhere else Weingarten is a reflection of another horribly biased union hell-bent on removing rights from law-abiding United States citizens. She just wants to get her name out there.

    Never underestimate the stupidity of large groups of people.

  • Spizike9 April 27, 2018, 9:02 am

    I’ve had two mortgages with Wells and banked with them for 10 years. I’ve also have lines of credit and credit cards with them. I haven’t once had a single problem with them in that time. I’m surprised you guys have so many issues with them. I know they’ve been in the news as of late and that type of stuff is vey frustrating but part of me thinks all of the problems everyone is having is because of the end user. I’ve even had an overdraft fee and they waived it. I also have had a late fee on one of my credit cards and they waived that too. Both instences were MY fault but they gave me a courtesy fee refund.

  • Ram6 April 27, 2018, 8:13 am

    “We essentially said you can have the mortgage business … or you can continue to value guns more than the people who serve in schools and the kids that have been affected by gun violence.”

    If that statement isn’t the height of leftist arrogance I don’t know what is. As if she speaks for every member of the union. I would suspect this stand isn’t universally accepted by the members, but what does she care.

    This is typical of these people. If given half a chance they will impose their beliefs and ideology on you by force, either violently or through intimidation as the AFT has done to Wells Fargo. This woman is an enemy of the constitution and America and it’s another reason we need to continue to keep Democrats and liberals of any stripe out of public office.

  • Just Sayin April 27, 2018, 7:53 am

    Hmm, Didn’t Bank of America get caught laundering money for drug cartels?

  • Rex Myers April 27, 2018, 7:49 am

    Its all about freedom and liberty isn’t it. I for one am glad W.F. choose to not to be bullied by an organization as corrupt and sinister as the AFT.
    It takes one to know one

  • CORNELIUS RING II April 27, 2018, 6:54 am

    This country is pretty much in the toilet when people heed utterings from non-taxpaying, acne faced, still living at home, 16 year old “hero” bicycle Hogg riders who issue pontifical bullshit long (time and distance) after the shit goes down,

    • Paul Taylor April 27, 2018, 9:14 am

      Hogg has stated his position, same as you. “All men are created equal”… was not based on whether or not he pays taxes (or has acne).

  • DEFENDER April 27, 2018, 6:44 am

    An interesting term – manufactured by the Gun Grabbers to further deceive the unknowing public about the realities of the guns and violence issue.

    (My figures below are top of my head estimates but close enough.)
    Their standard comment is (used by Hillary in the campaign) “In the US 30,000 people in the US are killed by “Gun Violence” every year.”

    The anti-gun Bloomberg people use this figure also. While He(Bloomberg) is protected by
    private security contractors who carry – umm – yup – Guns.

    What they don’t say is that 80% of those deaths are from, self inflicted “Suicides”.
    That is not a gun issue. Like most of the mass shootings it is a mental issue.

    But they don’t want to talk about or hear that.

    They have no concept of self determination or self defense and think we don’t need guns since the Police are there to “Protect” us. Uh NO – by the time the Police arrive its usually way too late to “Protect” Anyone. Their job more often becomes tracking the killer to bring to justice. But typically No direct help for the one who was attacked.

    They “gun grabbers” cannot admit “They” are largely responsible for many of the actual gun crimes/shootings by creating Gun Free Zones, and limiting the ability of honest gun owners to protect themselves. Its called Self Determination in exercising the Natural Right to Self Defense.

    Fortunately, for now, most of the general public(being logical people) understand that.

    More Deceptions:
    NOW they are saying there have been 18 school shootings since the Fla school shooting.
    Again – what they don’t say is – most of those shootings resulted in no one being shot.
    That many of those were accidental discharges, or like the deranged teacher in Ga who
    took 1 shot thru a window into the ground, hurting no-one.

  • Gourdhead April 27, 2018, 4:54 am

    The credibility of Wells Fargo is so damaged they need something to offer the masses of the unwashed in order to begin the repair process. Personally, and from personal experience, I think they are first class shysters and will never do business with them again.

  • Home mortages aren't king April 27, 2018, 4:02 am

    My home mortgage was sold to Wells Fargo years ago, and they seem to like taking my money every month. WF may have a lot of faults, but if I had a citibank mortgage, I’d probably have had to find someone else right now. As it is, I have no accounts with CB, so I can’t make my displeasure known to them the way that is best… through my pocket book. This standing behind the industry likely is a lesson they learned from when they stopped working with Hogue in that article that is linked above.

  • Julian O. April 27, 2018, 3:33 am

    Since when do banks get to make law and tell people what they can and cannot buy?
    I think Wells Fargo should call in all of its mortgages. Pay what you owe now or lose your house. No different than other banks bullying their customers.

  • Sepp W. April 20, 2018, 3:53 pm

    Kudos to WF, but don’t count your chicken ’til the eggs are hatched. And please stop saying “gun violence.” This is a made up liberal term to describe a firearm as a bad thing that ought to be eradicated.

    Guns are not inherently violent, but guns a are used to commit violent crimes. The anti-gun left and their apparatchiks have one end state; disarm all law-abiding Americans. They never address the person who uses a firearm to take to take an innocents life. But that’s how it is in a dystopia; there are no criminals, only crime.

  • Harry April 20, 2018, 2:45 pm

    Wells Fargo just earned MY business

    • Bull Moose April 21, 2018, 5:23 am

      Do you know anything about Well’s Fargo other than this? They are one of the most persistently and unapologetically corrupt, dishonest, felonious entities on earth. They’ve literally stolen billions from there customers twice (after being caught the first time) in just the last five years. A simple Google search would’ve reveled this to you.

      • Chris April 24, 2018, 4:37 pm

        Bull Moose, You don’t have to be an Asshat just because someone isn’t aware or doesn’t know something about a particular subject. I’m sure there are plenty of other subjects or topics that you are unaware of, that Harry or any other individual would know more than you.

        • Dr. Strangelove April 27, 2018, 4:26 am

          Bull Moose merely stated the facts, which are true. WF is crooked.

      • Doug White April 27, 2018, 9:04 am

        Kinda like our lawmakers,,no different than teacher controllers.Its crooks and screw the public every where.

      • Greg April 28, 2018, 1:53 am

        Excuse me but if you are going to slander a company at least state actual experiences. The majority of the issues Well’s is being beaten up over are more an issue of a relative few unscrupulous employees who do not act according to the banks policies. In fact in many cases they cost the bank and shareholder money not helped make them any. Your bonehead politicians went on an unjustified attack and showed their ignorance expecting that the criminals Wells fired for breaking the law and impacting Wells reputation should actually be compensated for being fired. In fact those same bone head politicians should have been getting names and getting arrests of those employees for their unlawful actions. Then the politicians solution is to take it out on the remaining Wells employees and share holders, pathetic. But you, you read it on the internet and saw the media slanted reporting and ate it all up. Do you realize that Wells Fargo has over a quarter million employees and how small a percentage five thousand over 5 or more years is? And now this ATF organization is going to punish their members by taking away what could be the best loan because of their political belief, is that looking out for your members???? (of course not!!)

        • Matt April 28, 2018, 3:10 pm

          Well stated Greg.

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