Calling the original measure the “Payday Lender Empowerment Act,” The Wall Street Journal today urged senators to repeal a provision of the financial overhaul bill giving the Fed the power to regulate and cap debit interchange fees.
The newspaper’s editorial board wrote that Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin’s amendment to last year’s financial overhaul bill is a “sop” to the retailers who contribute lots of money to his campaigns and a chance to “whack the banks one more time.”
The editorial didn’t mention credit unions and it focused heavily on the negative impact that price controls have on the prices of consumer goods.
It singled out for criticism the 17 Republicans who went along with the majority of Democrats when Durbin’s amendment passed the Senate 64-33 last May.
The editorial suggested that they prove that “ignorance is bipartisan” and recommended that they go to mandatory financial education classes and write on a chalkboard 1,000 times that “price controls on credit lead to…less credit.”
The editorial said that the bill sponsored by Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) to delay implementation of the Fed’s rule by two years doesn’t go far enough.
“If the law is a bad idea, it won't be a better idea in two years. This looks like one of those classic Beltway compromises that gives senators political cover but doesn't solve the problem,” the paper’s editorial board wrote.