Washington D.C. – As the U.S. House Financial Services Committee advances the Overdraft Protection Act of 2021 over the unanimous objections of Republicans, government watchdog Accountable.US urges Congress to finish the job of shielding consumers from exorbitant overdraft fees that especially target low-income families. Earlier this month, Accountable.US reviewed political donations from big banks that still charge customers overdraft fees including JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, and Bank of America (BofA) and found Republican members of the Senate Banking Committee and House Financial Services Committee have taken at least $3 million in career donations from industry groups and banks opposed to overdraft regulation.  

In addition, Accountable.US found several of these lawmakers were even rewarded with $41,000 in industry contributions in the days before and after defending overdraft fees, while others have former staffers that are now industry lobbyists.

Conservatives in Congress claim to be concerned about rising costs on working families yet continue to vote against efforts to save consumers money, like eliminating abusive overdraft fees. No one should have to pay a $35 overdraft fee over a gallon of milk or loaf of bread – a needless practice that is siphoning over $15 billion from the pockets of families and out of the economy. Unfortunately, some in Congress think it’s more important that their donors in the banking industry can keep padding their profits on the backs of less fortunate Americans. Now all eyes are on the U.S. House and Senate to finish the job of ending this practice, which will only help boost the economy. What will it take for lawmakers in the pocket of the big banks to finally put consumers first?”

Liz Zelnick, spokesperson for Accountable.US
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