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Credit Companies Concerned About Obama/Biden Pairing

by on September 1, 2008

People who are paying attention to the presidential elections happening right now are aware of the fact that Barack Obama has chosen Joe Biden as the vice presidential running mate for the Democratic party. And they may know that the two candidates have a history of disagreement in some areas of legislation. What they may not realize is that upcoming credit card legislation is one of those areas that has caused some deep concerns for credit card companies, concerns that you should be aware of if you are interested in what changes could take place with your own credit cards in the years to come.

Barack Obama has expressed concerns about the power that credit card companies have today, including the power of those companies to use unfair tactics to “trick” consumers. These tricks cause people to take out more on their credit cards than what they can reasonably afford to pay back. They also cause people to get trapped with fees and increased interest rates which are legal under current legislation but which nevertheless can seem unfair to the consumer. Obama has indicated a desire to change the laws in order to restrict card issuers from making the types of offers and setting the types of terms that cause these problems for consumers.

Joe Biden, on the other hand, is not someone who is anti credit card company. It is notable that the credit card company MBNA Corp. has been the largest contributor to Biden’s campaign. It is also notable that Biden comes from Delaware, the state where a majority of credit card companies choose to headquarter their businesses precisely because the laws there are in favor of the credit card company rather than the consumer. So Biden tends to be in favor of big business in this area.

You would think that this would indicate that credit card companies should be pleased with the fact that Obama has paired with Biden, right? After all, it could mean that Biden would moderate the stance that Obama has taken against the companies. Unfortunately for the credit card companies, that’s not what it means at all. Biden is unlikely to make this a point of debate with Obama because other issues are going to take precedence. Had he still been a member of the Senate when anti-credit-company legislation came up, he could have played a role in opposing that legislation. As it stands, if the pair is elected, he will instead be likely to be mum on the issue.

What does all of this mean for you as a consumer? It is believed that an Obama-led country would be likely to support changes to the terms and practices set forth by card issuers in favor of the consumer. This could mean that you would get charged fewer fees by the credit cards that you use although it may also mean that you won’t be able to get as easily approved for the card products and credit limits that you might think that you want!

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