ABA strongly opposes reintroduction of credit card routing bill

A bill that would impose network routing requirements on banks that issue credit cards harms consumers for the benefit of big retailers and grocery chains, American Bankers Association President and CEO Rob Nichols said today. The Credit Card Competition Act was reintroduced by Sens. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) following their failure to pass the same legislation last year.

In a statement, Nichols said ABA remains strongly opposed to the bill.

“This is a regressive bill that takes from consumers, community financial institutions and small businesses and gives to the most profitable global retailers and biggest grocery chains,” he said.

In addition to Marshall and Durbin, the bill’s cosponsors include Sens. J.D. Vance (R-Ohio) and Peter Welch (D-Vt.). A companion bill in the House is cosponsored by Reps. Lance Gooden (R-Texas), Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.), Jeff Van Drew (R-N.J.) and Tom Tiffany (R-Wis.).

“It’s particularly surprising to see Reps. Lofgren, Van Drew and Tiffany partnering with Rep. Gooden to champion the top legislative priority of growing grocery conglomerates, rather than standing up for food shoppers,” Nichols said. “Likewise, it’s hard to understand why Sen. Vance is working with Sens. Durbin, Marshall and Welch to promote the profits of big box department stores and dominant online retailers in their plan to take away Ohioans’ credit card rewards.

“We’ve seen this movie before: The original Durbin amendment eliminated debit card rewards, raised banking fees and increased fraud costs all without lowering costs for consumers,” Nichols added. “At this time of high prices and security risks, America’s banks are focused on protecting consumers, and we will vigorously oppose this misguided legislation.”