Dick Durbin needs to Go bye bye

Dick Durbin needs to lose his job. Not because he is a democrat or because he supports legislation I do not like. But because the way he makes his decision’s on legislature is corrupt.

Take the Durbin amendment to recent financial regulations as an example. This amendment is a price control, which essentially limits the amount of money banks are allowed to charge merchants such as Wal-Mart, per debit card transaction, which is a major source of bank revenue. For example the average market rate prior to the amendment was 44 cents, and now it is capped at 24 cents. A significant revenue loss for the banks, and significant savings for merchants.

Durbin says he did this for the good of the consumer, because these savings will be passed on to the consumer. This is true, but it is equally true that the new costs on the banks will also be passed on to the consumer. Bank of America made this obvious by introducing a $5 monthly fee on debit cards. A fee that was quickly nicked name the Durbin tax. Bank of America has since backed off from instituting this fee. However, the fact that they were not going to go through with it should have been obvious; it is a very unpopular measure. But I am glad they did this, because it brought a lot of attention to this Durbin tax, and made Dick Durbin squeal and complain that he was being blamed for it.

This new cost on banks will not be transferred to the consumers via a debit card fee; it will be transferred more discreetly in a way the consumer will never notice. The consumer will probably also never notice the savings they get while shopping at a merchant store. Ultimately the consumer will come out flat on this, paying less for merchant products, while paying more for banking products.

This is what Durbin counted on, that no one would notice. Durbin argued that this will help the consumer, or the public. However, the Durbin amendment is not going to help anyone, it just restructures through which industry the cost of debit card transactions is going to go through, and Durbin knows this. So why was it so important to him that this amendment passed?

In cases like this, when the standard of the “public interest” justifies any decision. A Congressman simply latches on to whatever arguments he finds convenient. The presence or absence of campaign contributions from an affected party is thus as “convincing” a factor as anything else. And guess what, Durbin has significant campaign contributions from merchants. This is what is so annoying about this, that Durbin did this just to help his political career. We need to send a message, that congressman that make decisions like this will lose their jobs.

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