Nader backs credit card debt reforms

Consumer advocate and former presidential candidate Ralph Nader wrote in favor of legal reforms to the credit card debt industry.

Credit card vendors, Nader wrote in an article posted to his website, hide fees from unsuspecting consumers in the fine print of credit card agreements, and until recently, could charge borrowers with annual percentage rates of up to 36 percent.

"The credit card vendors want you to forget that using a credit card means you are borrowing money and that you must repay what you borrowed with interest," Nader said.

Nader praised the legal reforms to the credit card debt system passed this May under the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act. He also urged lawmakers to pass restrictions on interchange fees, and asked consumers to pay only with cash for one week in protest of the credit system.

Last Friday, Democratic Representative Barney Frank of Massachusetts led hearings to discuss moving up the start date for credit card reforms to December 1, 2009. They are currently scheduled for February 22, 2010.