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    Retailers Take to the Airwaves to Save Swipe Fee Reform

    House of Representatives could vote May 22.

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Retail Federation (NRF) rolled out an advertising campaign aimed at preserving the debit card swipe fee reform.

    The consumer-focused ads hit the airwaves ahead of a House of Representatives vote on the Financial CHOICE Act, slated for May 22. The legislation would turn back reforms detailed in the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act — including swipe fee reform set by the Durbin Amendment.

    "We want to make sure voters understand that swipe fees add to the cost of everything they purchase, and that before reform banks had created an uncompetitive market that allowed them to set these fees as high as they liked," explained David French, NRF senior vice president for government relations. "Repeal would allow the monopolistic practices of the past to come back and allow the banks to start increasing these fees — and the prices paid by consumers — again. We want voters to know what is at stake."

    In addition to radio spots, campaign components will include newspaper ads and online digital ads in some locations. 

    The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) launched its own campaign in key congressional districts across the United States.

    "We launched these ads to remind Congress that America cannot afford to bail out Wall Street and the big banks once again," explained Austen Jensen, vice president of government affairs and financial services for RILA. "As it stands, this legislation is a poison pill for any bipartisan effort to enact meaningful financial reform. Congress must act to uphold debit swipe fee reform, or it will give Wall Street and card companies license to raise costs on America's retailers and our consumers."

    The full story is available from Convenience Store News sister publication Progressive Grocer.  

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