As a Dodd-Frank replacement bill heads to the cutting room Tuesday, one controversial provision looks likely to end up on the floor: the repeal of the Durbin Amendment, which caps the transaction fees that debit card issuers can charge merchants.
The House Financial Services Committee is set to mark up the replacement bill — the Financial Choice Act — nearly a year after a first draft was unveiled. Language to repeal the Durbin Amendment, which assigns a limit to card swipe fees and the payment of those fees to the banks, has survived until now, but comments from the committee's chairman, Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, have cast doubt on the repeal surviving much further.
Two financial industry CEOs and three industry lobbyists told CNBC that they have been informed in recent months by either Hensarling himself or a member of his staff that the repeal will not be part of the final bill.
In a briefing with reporters Thursday, Hensarling signaled that the future of the amendment is
"I know that we have members on both sides of the aisle that may be a little conflicted on the issue. ... We're still listening," said Hensarling, who added that he is "convinced that we will get the Financial Choice Act passed, regardless of the outcome of Durbin."
Republicans who oppose the original amendment and support its repeal do so because they don't believe the government should be in the business of setting