A new business group led by prominent Republicans will launch a seven-figure ad campaign this week targeting legislation that would hurt the bottom line of Visa and Mastercard.
The American Free Enterprise Chamber of Commerce is hoping to drum up opposition to the Credit Card Competition Act, bipartisan legislation that targets the $77 billion banks and payment companies collect from merchants each year whenever consumers swipe their credit cards at checkout. The Chamber has branded itself as an "anti-woke" alternative to the US Chamber of Commerce.
The proposed bill, which has received support from major retailers like Walmart Inc. and Target Corp., would require the largest US banks to offer two competing networks on their cards that retailers could choose between for routing credit-card purchases at their stores. This would provide more choice and flexibility for retailers when it comes to processing credit-card transactions.
The satirical ad campaign features a town called "Point Less, Kansas," where citizens have lost all of their credit card reward points. The ads show empty airports and hotels, which have been deserted because people can't use points to book flights and hotels.
The ads will be shown on streaming platforms including Hulu and Roku, as well as YouTube and Reddit, in the coming weeks.
The American Free Enterprise Chamber of Commerce is a business organization that is led by prominent Republican figures. These figures include former Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, former aides to House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California, former President Donald Trump, and Senator Mitt Romney of Utah. The Chamber of Commerce advocates for free enterprise and business-friendly policies.
Critics of the Credit Card Competition Act argue that it could lead to the elimination of credit cards' rewards programs, since it would negatively impact a key source of revenue for Visa Inc. and Mastercard Inc. These companies set the fees that merchants are charged every time a customer uses one of their cards, and banks collect the majority of these fees before passing on a portion to Visa and Mastercard.
Merchants say that the proposed legislation would allow them to lower the prices they charge consumers, which would be welcome relief given the current inflation rate.
Would you want to live in a world without competition? That's what the American Free Enterprise Chamber of Commerce is asking in its latest ads.
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