Attorney General Morrisey Successful in Urging Mastercard, Visa to Cease Plan on New Category for Gun Shop Sales

CHARLESTON — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey declared victory Thursday after Mastercard and Visa announced they are pausing plans of applying a new merchant code to distinguish firearms purchases at gun shops.

Several states, including West Virginia, are considering laws pertaining to the gun shops merchant code issue.

“This is a huge victory for the Second Amendment and privacy rights of law abiding gun owners here in West Virginia and across the country,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “I am glad that Mastercard and Visa listened to our serious concerns with the new merchant code and will act accordingly.”

“I want to thank my fellow attorneys general who worked with me on this effort.”

Attorney General Morrisey on Sept. 15 sent letters to Visa, Mastercard and American Express, urging the companies to reconsider their decision to apply a new merchant code to distinguish firearms purchases from other general merchandise sales.

Five days later, the Attorney General joined a coalition of 24 states, led by Montana and Tennessee, demanding the companies abandon their gun sales new merchant code plans.

Following the letter, the Attorney General personally had a discussion with Mastercard.

Attorney General Morrisey said the plan “has nothing to do with public safety and was done to appease radical gun control groups and others who are anti-Second Amendment after years of pressure.”

“Tracking legal gun sales from law-abiding merchants and consumers is nothing but an infringement on our constitutional right to keep and bear arms,” the Attorney General added.

Read copies of the Attorney General’s letters to Visa, Mastercard and American Express at:

Read a copy of the coalition’s letter at: