JPMorgan Chase announced that they are reversing course after WePay, which is owned by the bank, refused to do business with a conservative group.
WePay had refused to provide ticket payment processing services for the Defense of Liberty organization for an event featuring Donald Trump Jr., citing terms of service which said they would not serve anyone who promotes "hate, violence, racial intolerance, terrorism, the financial exploitation of a crime[.]" In response, Missouri treasurer Scott Fitzpatrick threatened to have the state stop doing business with the bank, claiming ideological discrimination due to a failure to show evidence of violation.
"We won't be doing business with any bank in the state treasurer's office that chooses to discriminate against essentially half the population," Fitzpatrick told Fox News' "Tucker Carlson Tonight" on Wednesday
On Thursday, JPMorgan Chase said it was going in a different direction.
"After further review, we determined that this organization didn’t violate the terms of service, and we are reaching out to the client to discuss reinstating the account," a JPMorgan Chase spokesperson said in a statement to FOX Business.
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In a letter to JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, Fitzpatrick accused the company of discriminating against conservatives. He acknowledged that they have a right to do business with whomever they choose, but warned that it would be state policy not to work with them or any other financial institution if they were discriminating based on political beliefs.
Fitzpatrick noted in his letter that conservative views are "supported by half the country and 60% of voting Missourians in the last election." He said that refusing to do business based on political beliefs is divisive and "un-American."
In their statement, the JPMorgan Chase spokesperson insisted that they do not engage in such discriminatory practices.
"To be clear, we have never and would never close an account due to a client’s political affiliation," they said.
Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., was not satisfied with JPMorgan Chase's response.
"Frankly, your belated claim of an unspecific ‘mistake’ rings hollow, and requires explanation," Hawley said in a letter to Dimon sent Thursday. "As a bank that has taken billions of dollars in taxpayer bailouts, you owe the public, to say nothing of your customers, an honest explanation as to why you canceled a contract on a transparently pretextual basis that you now admit was wrong. And you owe the public an explanation as to why you decided to target a conservative group on the basis of their speech.