US Representative Lance Gooden (5th Texas) and bipartisan coalition take a stand with main street, injecting competition into the credit card duopoly.

Austin, TX, June 12, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Last week, Representative Lance Gooden (R-TX) filed the Credit Card Competition Act with a bipartisan group of lawmakers in both chambers of Congress including Senators Durbin (D-IL) and Marshall (R-KS) and Representatives Lofgren (D-CA), Tiffany (R-WI), and Van Drew (R-NJ). A duopoly in the credit card market has left main street businesses with skyrocketing fees that overshadow profit margins and multiply inflation. The Texas Restaurant Association (TRA) applauds Rep. Gooden and his colleagues from both sides of the political aisle for taking a bold stand on the side of main street businesses and consumers with the Credit Card Competition Act.

“Two credit card companies control over 80% of the market, and predictably their fees have more than doubled in the past decade,” said Emily Williams Knight, President & CEO of the TRA. “This is a David versus Goliath story local restaurants live every day. As a practical matter, they must accept credit cards, and yet they have no ability to negotiate lower fees from Visa and Mastercard.”


The Credit Card Competition Act restores some balance to the scales by requiring banks with over $100 billion in assets to facilitate a second, secure network that local businesses can choose to process credit card transactions. This “dual routing” requirement already exists for debit cards, lowering fees and improving security. Replicating this targeted, free market change in the credit card market will save main street businesses and consumers an estimated $11 billion a year.

Emily Williams Knight added: “The Credit Card Competition Act is not only great for main street businesses, it’s great for consumers too. Rising credit card fees are a hidden cost that hurts every American—even those who do not use credit cards. Restaurants operate in an incredibly competitive environment that lowers prices for consumers. It’s time for the largest credit card companies to face some competition as well. It’s time for the United States to join the rest of the industrialized world in reigning in skyrocketing credit card fees.”


Formed in 1937, the Texas Restaurant Association (TRA) serves as the advocate and indispensable resource for the foodservice industry in Texas. As a leading business association, the TRA represents the state’s $87 billion restaurant industry, which encompasses more than 53,000 locations and a workforce of over 1.3 million employees. Along with the Texas Restaurant Foundation, the workforce development arm of the TRA, the association proudly continues to protect, advance, and educate a growing industry as the TRA enters its 86th anniversary year. For more information, please visit www.txrestaurant.org.

In May 2019, Dr. Emily Williams Knight was appointed President and CEO of the Texas Restaurant Association and Education Foundation. In her first year, Knight was at the forefront of leading one of the most important industries through the COVID 19 pandemic. Knight has been recognized as a fierce and effective leader, quickly securing several waivers from Governor Abbott while also lobbying and securing federal support to help the restaurant and foodservice industry survive.

Knight has more than 20 years of experience and success in national and global leadership positions. Prior to leading the TRA, Knight served as Managing Director of Higher Education North America at Study Group, a leading provider of international university education. Knight worked with top university leaders across the U.S. and Canada to build international student recruitment and education pathway programs. Her career includes senior leadership roles at Laureate and serving as President of Kendall College, a leader in hospitality and culinary arts education. During her time as Kendall’s president, Knight expanded access to culinary and hospitality education throughout the Midwest, Latin America, and the Middle East. She worked closely with the Illinois legislature to advance the industry and partnered with the Mayor of Chicago, Choose Chicago, and the Illinois Restaurant Association to drive Chicago visitors to a record 50 million per year.

CONTACT: Kelsey Erickson Streufert Texas Restaurant Association 2142362649 [email protected] 

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