WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Peter Welch (D-VT) today joined Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Sen. Roger Marshall, M.D. (R-KS) and small business owners to call for the passage of the Credit Card Competition Act, bipartisan legislation that would support small businesses and merchants in Vermont and across America by restoring competition in the credit card market, which is currently dominated by the Visa-Mastercard duopoly.
“So many of us here in Washington celebrate the American dream of owning a small business, but the truth is it’s far too difficult to make that dream a reality. The brutal exchange fees imposed by credit cards are absolutely abusing Vermont’s merchants,” said Sen. Welch. “It’s hard enough to be a small business today, especially as they compete against online retailers and big box stores—now, the growing swipe fees on every transaction are making it harder. The Visa-Mastercard duopoly’s plan to raise interchange fees is just the latest reason to pass the bipartisan Credit Card Competition Act, so we can make it easier for our small businesses to thrive.”
Reports suggest Visa and Mastercard plan to increase fees imposed on merchants and consumers this October and April.
Recently, Senator Welch took to the Senate floor to urge his colleagues to advance the CCCA, and highlighted the essential role small businesses play in Vermont’s rural communities:
“Our government is not protecting our merchants and our small businesses,” Sen. Welch said on Senate floor. “Where there is a monopoly—or in this case a duopoly—and there’s this massive pricing power that Visa and Mastercard have, they’re doing what monopolies do and duopolies do: they abuse that pricing power, and they stick it to our merchants. It was $33 billion in charges…It’s $93 billion in charges now…Let’s act. Let’s pass [the Credit Card Competition Act] and let’s protect our merchants against these rip-off credit card fees from Visa and Mastercard.”
His full speech can be viewed here.
The CCCA has bipartisan, bicameral support in Washington, with Senator Welch (D-VT), Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Senator Roger Marshall, M.D. (R-KS), and Senator J.D. Vance (R-OH) leading the bill in the Senate. Companion legislation was introduced in the House by Representative Lance Gooden (R-TX-05) and Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-CA-18). Senator Welch previously led the bill as a member of the House.
For more on the CCCA, please click here.