Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Democratic Control In Washington And State Legislatures Advances Consumer Issues

One of the greatest advantages that the public will see thanks to the Democratic control in Washington and in state legislatures is the advancement of important consumer issues.

In Washington, Senator Christopher Dodd, D-CT, has held hearings on the credit card industry in an attempt to eliminate outrageous unfair fees to consumers. Some credit card companies have already pledged change to the the committee, in advance of any legislation. Senator Dodd has also held hearings on the outrageous practices of the subprime home loan industry that takes advantage of persons seeking to buy their own home with ripoffs such as high interest rates or balloon payment clauses that cause many persons to lose their home to the lender even if they religiously make every payment.

At the state level, states such as Orgeon in which Democrats won control of the state house have advanced new bills that will be signed into law that will limit the "payday loan" industry to a maximum of 36% interest rates, compared to the current 300-500% some have now been charging. While these payday loan crooks claim that they cannot make it financially with such an interest rate cap, this limit will make it more possible for persons to payoff such loans and not remain in never ending debt to these loan shark operations.

Other important legislation will likely put a new 8ocent tax on cigarettes, with the mony used to advance children's health care. Not only will this directly help provide all children the medical care they deserve, but it should help put a new reason up to smokers to quit or realize the harm that their second hand smoke causes to others, especially children or those with health problems.

The American public is already witnessing advances for consumer protection and public health thanks to the new Democratic control in Washington and at the state level in some states. Since 1994, when Republicans won control in Washington and in many states, consumer protection slowed to a near halt, as big business lobby efforts and campaign donations as well as the "conservative" intent to pander to big business and against the average person was the rule. Consumers should see big benefits in their life as home loans become more honest, unfair credit card fees are limited, and payday loan companies have their loan shark interest rates capped.

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