September 20, 2022

Reps. Welch and Gooden introduce House version of NAFCU-opposed Credit Card Competition Act

CapitolOn Monday, Representatives Peter Welch, D-Vt., and Lance Gooden, R-Texas, introduced the House companion to the Credit Card Competition Act of 2022 (CCCA), which was introduced in late July by Senators Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and Roger Marshall, R-Kansas.

In another attempt to expand the Durbin Amendment, which was enacted in 2010 as part of the Dodd-Frank Act, the NAFCU-opposed bill aims to expand interchange price controls by creating a new credit card routing mandate. This mandate would be a direct detriment to credit unions and their members by placing consumers at high risk during credit card transactions. 

"The House version of the Credit Card Competition Act will fail consumers at a time when financial well-being is of the utmost importance," stated NAFCU President and CEO Dan Berger, who also called the anti-consumer bill that gives retail giants full control over the payments network a  “bad idea, plain and simple.”

NAFCU last week held its 2022 Congressional Caucus where credit unions were able to share with lawmakers the harms a bill of this scope would have on their institutions, and the members they serve. The CCCA only benefits big box retailers and would turn the payments system on its head. In addition, it would take away credit unions' ability to provide low-cost, and sometimes free, financial products and services. NAFCU Senior Vice President of Government Affairs Greg Mesack also set the record straight by co-hosting an hour-long briefing on interchange, sharing the harmful effects of this legislation with more than 50 Congressional and Federal Reserve staff members.

"Putting consumers at risk by using cheap, untested networks and passing along higher credit card costs to financial institutions and their members is an unwarranted interference," added Berger. “NAFCU will continue fighting this detrimental legislation and make sure credit unions and their members are protected.”

Of note, Berger recently penned an op-ed sharing insights on why enacting the CCCA would also worsen inflation pressures for Americans by limiting consumers' access to safe and secure payment networks during credit card transactions. 

“Retailers would have the ability to choose which networks process all credit card purchases, for their own financial benefit, while erasing consumers’ choice and any expected reward points during transactions and exposing them to increased risk, all without any consequence,” wrote Berger.

The best messenger with policymakers in Washington is the credit union who is out there every day trying to meet the needs of their members. We encourage you to share a statement here that NAFCU can publicly use with media, members of Congress and others to oppose this legislation.