Representative Ted Budd (R-NC) was joined by Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), and the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit, Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO), for a colloquy on the damages that the Durbin Amendment has wreaked on the welfare of low-income consumers and the American financial system at large.
During the colloquy, Rep. Budd made the following remarks:
I draw a distinction between political costs and real costs. In no city in the country are the political costs treated as real more than Washington, but the truth is that for the other 99 percent of the country, the real costs are what count.
The real costs of the Durbin Amendment have been amply documented. Community banks have seen interchange revenue fall 20 percent. The low-income consumer has seen his checking fees double. The small ticket merchant has seen his interchange costs increase.
For those of us who campaigned on a platform of free markets and limited government, which is most of our party, I’d suggest that a principle followed only when it costs nothing is not much of a principle at all. The principle that the government shouldn’t be setting prices ended up having a political price of its own, and for some, that was the only reality of this debate.
I only wish I could say the same for the 1 million people the Durbin Amendment has driven out of the banking system.