On July 25th, 2022, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Senator Roger Marshall (R-KS) introduced legislation (S. 4674) that would enact harmful credit card routing mandates. Peter Welch (D-VT) and Lance Gooden (R-TX) introduced the House companion (H.R. 8874) on September 19th, 2022. Their legislation would allow big-box retailers–like Walmart and Target–to process credit card transactions based solely on what is cheapest for them without regard to the value that consumers derive from rewards and many other benefits. This would add billions of dollars to the bottom lines of mega-retailers every year.
Here’s the problem: This legislation would eliminate almost all the funding that goes towards popular credit cards rewards programs like cash back and travel points.
In 2020, U.S. card rewards programs returned roughly $60 billion to consumers of all income levels, helping working class families pay for groceries and back to school shopping. Credit card routing mandates would effectively eliminate credit card rewards as we know it.
Back in 2010, debit card rewards all but disappeared after Senator Durbin was able to enact similar routing mandates for debit card transactions. Big-box retailers and their lobbyists convinced Congress to let them pocket the funds that financial institutions offered to consumers via debit card rewards programs. Now, 12 years later, they are trying to do it again… this time with credit card routing mandates.
If you love your credit card rewards, tell your lawmakers, “HANDS OFF MY REWARDS!” Tell them to oppose credit card routing legislation!
Hands Off My Rewards is a project of the Electronic Payments Coalition