Candidates' positions are categorized as Pro (Yes), Con (No), Not Clearly Pro or Con, or None Found. Candidates who have changed their positions are listed as Now their most recent position. Candidates are listed by party and in alphabetical order by last name. Black & white photos indicate candidates who have withdrawn or who no longer meet our criteria for inclusion.
Gary Johnson, former Governor of New Mexico, issued the following statement through his Communications Director, Joe Hunter, in a Feb. 10, 2012 email to ProCon.org:
"Free markets are good for America, and individuals making their own decisions, without government interference, are what make a free market work. As a matter of personal finance, one hopes credit cards are used responsibly; however, they are a part of today’s marketplace and commerce, and the costs, risks and benefits of their use will be accommodated in that marketplace." Feb. 10, 2012 Gary Johnson
Barack Obama, 44th President of the United States, stated the following at the May 22, 2009 signing ceremony for The Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure Act, in the White House Rose Garden, available at www.whitehouse.gov:
"You know, most Americans use credit cards all the time. In the majority of cases, this is a convenience or a temporary, occasional crutch: a means to make life a little easier; to make the rare, large, or unexpected purchase that's paid off as quickly as possible.
We've also seen credit cards become, for a minority of customers, part of an uneasy, unstable dependence. Some end up in trouble because of reckless spending or wishful thinking. Some get in over their heads by not using their heads. And I want to be clear: We do not excuse or condone folks who've acted irresponsibly. We don't excuse irresponsibility.
But the reason this legislation is so important is because there are many others - many who have written me letters, or grabbed my arm along rope lines, or shared their stories while choking back tears - who relied on credit cards not because they were avoiding responsibilities, but precisely because they wanted to meet their responsibilities - and got trapped...
Over the past decade, credit card debt has increased by 25 percent in our country. Nearly half of all Americans carry a balance on their cards. Those who do, carry an average balance of more than $7,000...
I want to be clear about this: Credit card companies provide a valuable service; we don't begrudge them turning a profit. We just want to make sure that they do so while upholding basic standards of fairness, transparency, and accountability. Just as we demand credit card users to act responsibly, we demand that credit card companies act responsibly, too. And that's not too much to ask." May 22, 2009 Barack Obama
Mitt Romney, former Governor of Massachusetts, stated the following in his Sep. 6, 2011 document "Believe in America: Mitt Romney's Plan for Jobs and Economic Growth," available at mittromney.com:
"The Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure Act of 2009 produced federal restrictions on credit card companies that have already led to higher interest rates, higher annual fees, and lower credit limits, especially for middle-class borrowers." Sep. 6, 2011 Mitt Romney
Jill Stein, MD, former Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, was quoted in an Apr. 5, 2012 article "Jobs Numbers Won't Return 'The Stolen Decades," available at www.jillstein.org:
"The fundamental flaws of an economic policy dictated by Wall Street are apparent, even if they have sometimes been masked by periods of apparent growth that were actually financed by unsustainable credit card and housing debt. Wealth that should be invested in our local economy to create jobs is being put in the hands of the super rich who build factories abroad instead. Families disintegrate while the income of the richest few surges upward. This is changing America in a way that we must not accept." Apr. 5, 2012 Jill Stein
Newt Gingrich, former Speaker of the US House of Representatives (R-GA), wrote the following in his 2009 book To Save America: Stopping Obama's Secular-Socialist Machine:
"Outsource the authentication of new Medicare and Medicaid suppliers to Visa, Mastercard, or American Express. After forty years of failure, it is clear the status quo in Washington, D.C., is incapable of managing these programs, so let’s turn to experts with a track record of success.
The American credit card industry processes over $2 trillion in transactions every year, and there are 800 million credit cards accepted by millions of vendors to buy countless products. Yet fraud constitutes just one-tenth of one percent of the credit card industry. Conservatively speaking, fraud in Medicare and Medicaid is 10 percent, making it 100 times worse." 2009 Newt Gingrich
ProCon.org emailed the Paul campaign for his position to this question on Jan. 31, 2012, and Feb. 7, 2012. We also left a follow up telephone message on Feb. 2, 2012. We have not yet received a reply with Paul's position as of Feb. 9, 2012.
Buddy Roemer, former Governor of Louisiana, issued the following statement through his Policy Advisor, Carrie Schenkel, in a Feb. 10, 2012 email to ProCon.org:
"Usually, but the danger grows of unrestricted and unverified credit swamping the entire system. Credit cards speed up transactions and are therefore good for competitiveness. The danger is the abuse of the system by two important participants: individuals and processing banks.
Individuals need balance and analysis in their use of cards. There is minimum education and maximum exposure in the current system. Processing banks have too much power signed away by the recipients of the credit. Banks are allowed by regulation and law to charge outrageous interest rates, often hidden, and to assess unbelievable fees for every service and each payment hiccup.
In truth, people with good credit are subsidizing people with bad credit by paying outrageous interest rates and allowing the insolvent to escape with no penalty.
Change necessary? Individual access to credit based upon ability to repay – nothing else." Feb. 10, 2012 Buddy Roemer