Seattle Forced to Bank With Wells Fargo Again After Spurning Them During the #NoDAPL Protests

Masked protesters with the water protectors occupy the hall outside Wells Fargo bank in Duluth on Friday January 12, 2018. Bob King / Forum News Service

Last year, in the wake of the violent protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline here in North Dakota, the City of Seattle chose with a unanimous vote of its city council to pull business from Wells Fargo. Because Wells Fargo was involved in financing the pipeline project.

Left wing activists across the nation celebrated, but now the city is eating crow. They’ve been forced sign a new contract with Wells Fargo because no other bank wanted their business/

“The city of Seattle will keep banking with Wells Fargo & Co. after it could get no other takers to handle the city’s business,” Seattle Times environmental reporter Lynda Mapes wrote yesterday.

The contract was set to expire Dec. 31, but as finance managers for the city searched for arrangements to handle the city’s banking, it got no takers, said Glen Lee, city finance director. That was even after splitting financial services into different contracts to try to attract a variety of bidders, including smaller banks.

In the end, there were none at all.

“It became clear this was our best and only course of action,” Lee said of the city’s decision to stick with Wells Fargo after all.

Can you blame other banks for not wanting to do business with an activist city government?

Despite all the gnashing-of-teeth and wrending-of-garments on the left about pipeline, the truth is that they’re legal. And they’re used to transport products like oil and natural gas which we all use. Yet activists want pipeline companies (and those who help pipeline companies build pipelines) to be treated as though they’re part of some criminal enterprise.

It’s ridiculous. Childish, in fact.

I’m very much in favor of childish people being treated like children.

If Wells Fargo had declined to renew a contract with Seattle we all could have enjoyed of schandenfreude.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com, a columnist for the Forum News Service, and the host of the Rob (Re)Port on Fargo-based WDAY AM970 from noon-2pm weekdays.

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