Arkansas A.G. Joins Letter Addressing De-Banking

Arkansas Attorney General Tim Griffin recently joined 22 other state attorneys general in a public letter addressing the rising trend of politicized de-banking.

The letter urges proxy voting advisory firms Institutional Shareholder Service and Glass Lewis to give equal treatment and provide transparency in their advice regarding shareholder resolutions that address de-banking.

Family Council has written repeatedly about how de-banking hurts charities and conservative causes.

In 2021, our credit card processor — a company owned by Chase Bank — canceled our account with virtually no notice and no explanation.

In 2022, Chase abruptly closed the account of Ambassador Sam Brownback’s National Committee for Religious Freedom with little warning or explanation, and PayPal similarly disabled the account of a group called the Free Speech Union.

All of this prompted Arkansas and several other states to send a letter to the CEO of JPMorgan Chase expressing deep concern over the company’s pattern of de-banking conservative groups last May.

The A.G.’s letter to Institutional Shareholder Service and Glass Lewis voices similar concerns over these issues, saying,

Your companies, International Shareholder Services, Inc., and Glass Lewis & Co., provide proxy voting advice to many businesses and investors who are citizens of our States as well as to our States’ investment vehicles.

That voting advice directly impacts how our Nation’s largest companies operate. . . .

Your lack of transparency is troubling. And your voting recommendations on debanking proposals may breach your legal obligations. We seek more transparency and written assurance that you will cease any practice that violates the law, including your duty to act in the best interest of the citizens of our States, or your stated policies on recommendations.

Alliance Defending Freedom notes,

While billing themselves as viewpoint-neutral, both ISS and Glass Lewis regularly endorse shareholder resolutions for left-of-center causes such as ESG (environmental, social, and governance) and DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion). At the same time, the firms have consistently opposed resolutions calling for transparency and internal reporting on potential instances of politically motivated de-banking—resolutions dismissed by ISS as “anti-ESG” along with nearly every other conservative proposal.

You can read the A.G.’s letter to Institutional Shareholder Service and Glass Lewis here.

Governor Sanders Proclaims Day of Prayer for Arkansas Students

Governor Sanders has proclaims a Day of Prayer for Arkansas Students this week.

Act 902 of 2021 establishes a Day of Prayer for Arkansas Students on the last Wednesday of September each year.

The governor’s prayer proclamation reads,

WHEREAS: Students, teachers, and parents in Arkansas enjoy the right to pray. Arkansas and its government acknowledge that we are all endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights, among them freedom of religion;

WHEREAS: As the Gospel of John tells us, “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us — whatever we ask — we know that we have what we asked of him;”

WHEREAS: Knowing the power of prayer, we ask God to provide Arkansas students with wisdom and guidance in this new schoolyear;

WHEREAS: We pray that our students see the benefits of the most sweeping education reforms — Arkansas LEARNS — to be implemented in our schools in decades so that no child is trapped in a lifetime of poverty;

WHEREAS: We unite with our fellow Arkansans to thank God for our great schools and the opportunities they provide; and

WHEREAS: We make a commitment to always protect the right to pray in our schools, knowing the power God holds over our state and her people.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, Governor of the State of Arkansas, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the laws of the State of Arkansas, do hereby proclaim September 27th,2023 as


IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Great Seal of the State of Arkansas to be affixed this 6th day of September, in the year of our Lord 2023.

We want to thank Governor Sanders for recognizing September 27 as the state’s third annual Day of Prayer for Arkansas Students — and we want to encourage Arkansans everywhere to pause this week to pray for our students, our teachers, and our school administrators. There truly is tremendous value in taking time to pray.

CBN Highlights How Family Council and Others Affected by “De-Banking”

Last week the Christian Broadcasting Network reported how banks in America have been weaponized against conservative organizations. This is especially true of Christian groups that have been “de-banked” by JPMorgan Chase and others.

The CBN story — which you can watch above or read here — cites Family Council among the groups who have had their bank accounts closed.

At 10:29 AM on Wednesday, July 7, 2021, our office received a terse email from our credit card processor — a company owned by JPMorgan Chase — saying, “Unfortunately, we can no longer support your business. We wish you all the luck in the future, and hope that you find a processor that better fits your payment processing needs.”

Within sixty seconds, our account was terminated and and Family Council could no longer accept donations online.

Just like the CBN story highlights, eventually we learned the company had designated Family Council as “High Risk.” According to their Terms of Service, High Risk companies include:

  • Astrology and psychic services
  • Career placement services
  • Cyberlockers and file sharing or storage services
  • Companies that conduct research or testing on animals
  • Companies known to have issues with labor or working conditions
  • Companies involved in land acquisition and involuntary resettlement
  • Companies who have been subject to allegations related to human rights violations
  • Pawn shops
  • Private prison operators

The list goes on, but it’s unclear how what prompted the bank to decide Family Council fit under the “High Risk” category. All we can do is speculate that our conservative principles and our public policy work might have had something to do with the decision.

However, the Terms of Service also let the banking service terminate our account at any time for any reason or no reason at all. Apparently that’s what they decided to do with us.

It’s frustrating that one of the largest banks in the nation would treat its customers so unfairly and unprofessionally. Unfortunately, this kind of behavior may be more common than many people realize.

You can find the full story from CBN here.