Gov. Evers Vetoes Bill That Would Make it Harder to Stop Criminal Credit Card Abuse in Wisconsin

March 29, 2024

This legislation would have banned the use of the Merchant Category Code (MCC) to flag suspicious gun purchasing patterns.

Washington, D.C. — On Friday, Wisconsin Gov. Evers’ vetoed a bill which would have banned the use of a merchant category code specific to gun stores and exempt the gun industry from oversight that applies to nearly every other type of business. In response, Guns Down America Executive Director Hudson Munoz issued the following statement:

“Shame on the Republicans who passed this radical bill through both houses of the Wisconsin State Legislature–it should have never made it to the governor’s desk. We applaud Gov. Evers for rejecting the exemptions the gun lobby was seeking in banning the use of a merchant category code for gun stores. No other code is banned in Wisconsin. We have merchant category codes for nearly every other retailer — from bike stores to wig and toupee shops — why would gun sellers be any different? We know the shooters who carried out some of our nation’s worst mass shootings used credit cards to buy their guns and ammunition. The financial services industry has a moral obligation to help Wisconsin law enforcement preempt mass shootings and gun crime with this common sense data point. Banks routinely monitor for suspicious financial activity related to terrorism, stolen cards, fraudulent transactions, money laundering, and human trafficking–all while following laws that protect customer privacy. This is about putting Wisconsin communities and families before profits and guns.”

Guns Down America led the effort to create a new merchant category code to identify suspicious patterns of firearms and ammunition purchases that could detect and deter gun crimes. In 2022, the International Standards Organization (ISO) approved the creation of the code, but state legislatures have been split on implementation of this life-saving measure. Read more here.