Nicole Ciandella, 202-331-2773
Washington, D.C., June 9, 2011 – Although a 54-member majority of the U.S. Senate voted yesterday to delay the draconian price controls on debit card interchange fees from Dodd-Frank, 12 Republicans sided with Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin to prevent the measure from getting the 60 votes it needed. In his post today on OpenMarket.org , the Competitive Enterprise Institute's John Berlau blasts the GOP's "Durbin Dozen" for defeating what could have been the first major rollback of the intrusive Dodd-Frank financial legislation rammed through Congress last year.
Berlau urges the Federal Reserve to take the wishes of the 54 senators into account and write a final rule that allows, to the extent they can under the law, debit card issuers to recoup costs. This will help prevent costs from being further shifted to consumers and entrepreneurs with checking accounts. He also praises the senators of both parties who were moved by the Durbin Amendment's negative effects, such as the elimination of free checking and card rewards, and the risk of failure by small financial institutions facing a massive loss of revenue.
Berlau concludes, "This was a case -- with some of the nation's biggest retailers supporting price controls -- in which even the establishment media could not characterize the pro-market position as 'pro-business.' And conservative and free-market groups were almost unanimously on the pro-market side."
To see the names of the senators in the GOP's Durbin Dozen, click here