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Politico is reporting that Republican leaders in the US House of Representatives have decided to "drop language from a sweeping bank deregulation bill that would have eliminated a cap on debit card swipe fees, handing a major victory to retail lobbyists who spent months trying to kill the provision."

The language was included in the Financial CHOICE Act of 2017, which Politico describes as "a sweeping bank deregulation bill" the passage of which has been a major priority for the GOP-dominated Congress.

Politico writes: "GOP leaders decided to remove the proposal from the nearly 600-page Financial CHOICE Act after confirming Wednesday that it threatened support for the rest of the bill, multiple senior Republican sources familiar with the matter said ... The issue forced lawmakers to choose between the banks, which wanted to repeal the regulation from Dodd-Frank, and retailers, which were fighting to keep it alive. Both sides claimed billions of dollars were at stake, and in the end, the banks lost."

In a statement released immediately after the decision was made public, Food Marketing Institute (FMI) president/CEO Leslie Sarasin said, ""We are thrilled to hear that the House of Representatives decided to maintain the pro-competitive debit reforms that have provided enhanced competition and lower prices since they were enacted in 2010. We are grateful to the many members of Congress who listened intently to their constituents about an incredibly complicated subject - routing and competition in debit card transactions - and understood that competition is critical, that the reforms are working and that they should be maintained."

And Politico quotes Austen Jensen, vice president for government affairs for the Retail Industry Leaders Association, as saying that the decision should "finally put to rest any more efforts to repeal the debit reforms."
KC's View:
Good. I've maintained from the beginning that this was a battle of Main Street vs. Wall Street, and that there was absolutely no reason to side with the banks.

The only thing I disagree with is the notion that this will "put to rest any more efforts to repeal the debit reforms." There are a lot of lobbyists for the financial services industry who have to justify their paychecks and expense accounts, and I would guess that even now they're strategizing about how to best revisit this issue.