House Republicans are embroiled in a debate over the notorious “Durbin Amendment”, according to a report from Politico, which has delayed consideration of the CHOICE Act on the House floor as leaders of the Republican Conference work to settle the “behind-the-scenes tug of war” over whether or not to repeal the provision. The “Durbin Amendment," one of the more divisive aspects of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act, provides a cap on debit-card fees which can be collected by banks. The version of the Financial CHOICE Act which was adopted by the House Financial services Committee removes the amendment in a single sentence. According to Politico, the provision's removal has pitted House Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling against several Republican members of the House Financial Services Committee who are against the repeal of the provision and actively whipping up votes against it, citing an anticipated detrimental impact on consumers. The debate over the Durbin Amendment is not new. Several House Financial Services Committee members from low income districts spoke out publicly against its removal last year, despite backing the Financial CHOICE Act in Committee this Congress.
In order to get the Financial CHOICE Act on the floor, Republican Leadership will have to determine whether to whip votes into line or remove the provision through a manager’s amendment.