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Teachers Union Cuts Ties With Wells Fargo Over NRA Support

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Andrew Harnik
/
AP
American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten speaks at a news conference on American labor on Capitol Hill in Washington in 2017.

The largest teachers union in the country is ending its relationship with Wells Fargo because the bank does business with the gun industry and the NRA.

The American Federation of Teachers has 1.7 million members and channels about 1,600 mortgages a year to Wells Fargo. The union threatened to end its endorsement after the school shooting in Parkland, Fla., and after reports that Wells Fargo was the National Rifle Association’s banker.

AFT President Randi Weingarten hopes to isolate the NRA. “This is the first time that others are starting to look at economy power as a way of mitigating their influence,” Weingarten says.

In a statement, Wells Fargo said the company wants schools to be safe, but that elected officials, not banks, should decide which products people can buy.

Not all banks agree. Chase, Bank of America, Citigroup, and others have limited their ties to the gun industry.

Charles is senior reporter focusing on special projects. He has won numerous awards including an IRE award, three SPJ Public Service Awards, and a National Murrow. He was also a finalist for the Livingston Award for Young Journalists and Third Coast Director’s Choice Award.