Bernie Sanders

Bad Idea: President Bernie Sanders Would Cap ATM Fees at $2

So... fewer ATMs?


Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders would cap ATM withdrawal fees at $2 if elected president, he said in a speech Tuesday. Later, he tweeted:

Of course, not all Americans pay $5 to withdraw money from the ATM. Customers in the city of San Francisco pay $3.85 on average, according to Yahoo! News. And many people who withdraw money from their own banks pay no fee at all.

Privately-owned ATMs probably aren't charging convenience fees out of spite—they charge the fees because it costs a certain amount of money to maintain the service. Capping them would prompt ATMs to make up the money some other way, either by charging customers more for other features or by cutting services. Note that this isn't theoretical: federal banking regulation of interchange fees prompted many banks to scale back on free checking and rewards programs that largely benefitted poor people.

But don't expect a candidate who believes Americans should be limited to just a few kinds of deodorants and sneakers to grasp that.

Hat tip: Chuck Ross / The Daily Caller

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  1. We’ll obviously need more regulations to make sure that private ATM owners *don’t* reduce services!

  2. So if any bank has, or finds a way to charge nothing for a withdrawal fee in order to gain a competitive edge, by order of government decree that bank must charge 2$. Got it. =)

    1. My bank (USAA) refunds all my ATM fees every month.

    2. The rich will just use private co-op union loopholes. Full bank ban is the only way to be fair.

  3. How many complaints from staffers do you think Bernie’s campaign manager had endure before sitting him down for a serious one-on-one about showering and wearing a clean shirt every single day while he was running for president?

    1. My last pay check was $9500 working 12 hours a week online. My sisters friend has been averaging 15k for months now and she works about 20 hours a week. I can’t believe how easy it was once I tried it out. This is what I do..

      Clik This Link inYour Browser….

      ? ? ? ? http://www.WorkPost30.Com

    2. He really is a fucking moron. If a bank charged too much for a withdrawal, why wouldn’t another bank across the street charge less and get all the business.

      This goes into the same idiot bin as net neutrality. He should just come out and call for outlawing time preference, since that is what he is objecting to.

  4. Berkeley very briefly banned ATM fees in the ’90s. Banks simply stopped letting non-customers use their ATMs.

    Berkeley backed down.

  5. When did reality ever affect the thinking of Socialists/Communists?

    1. the government IS a regulator, that’s what it does, in case you missed vietnam, iraq….and oh yea, the bailout of general motors…..oh, and don’t forget about regan firing all those air traffic controllers for exhibiting their “right” to protestant.

  6. Al Franken (before he was Senator Franken) wrote what was then considered a satirical novel about a Presidential candidate who ran on a platform of opposing ATM fees.

      1. It’s “Why Not Me? (novel)” on Wikipedia.

  7. Without service fees, there pretty much wouldn’t be ATMs except at banks, since banks still can save money by not hiring tellers or being open when normal people can go there.

    Here’s a good way to lower the fees you pay. Take out more money at once. If you can’t do that, stop being so damn poor.

    1. He’s also never heard of AllPoint or the other ATMs that some banks operate fee-free.

    2. Or just get cash back when you grocery shop.

      Who uses cash, anyway? I only use cash for one very specific transaction.

      1. Rolling up a Benjamin to snort lines of coke off a hooker’s ass?

        1. That sounds like a pretty sustainable use of that cash.

          Sadly, no. I have this guy who’s not my friend, but I have to stand around in his living room for some ten, fifteen minutes and talk to him and his old lady like we are friends. Then cash is exchanged for goods. I finally get to leave after we make more small talk for another ten minutes.

            1. Loooooooool. Is that still around?

        2. Not in these economic times. More like a Lincoln.

          1. Paul snorts coke through empty penny rolls.

            1. Where did the pennies go?

              1. Blew up with a bang.

      2. I use cash for just about any meatspace purchase under $100. It impoverishes the records of my spending that are circulating, I assume, just about everywhere in this modern era of customers-as-data-cattle. That pleases me.

        1. Whatever gets you off man. LOL.

    3. So you mean no dodgy ATMs in a dark corner with a skimmer? ATMs are at every bank branch (of which there are 10s of thousands) and at basically every retail outlet as “cash back” when using your debit card for a purchase.

      Perhaps some of you don’t remember a time before ATMs. When they first came out (and never mind that you could even get coins out) the whole mantra pushed by the banks for using ATM’s was it was costing them a fortune to maintain enough tellers for daily demand at that either fees would skyrocket or service would plummet.

      So yes, fees did skyrocket as did the bottom lines of the banks. I am not going to cry for any bank until such a time as they operate as free standing entities with no government safety net or regulatory favors.

      1. What are you babbling about? There was never a time when you could go into a bank and withdraw amounts from an account held at another bank for free. In fact, you couldn’t do it for a fee either. Every bank that I’m aware of allows its own customers to use its own ATMs without fees.

      2. You do realize the vast majority of banks would greatly prefer to operate as free standing entities, right? Remember, you’re talking about one of, if not thee, most regulated industries in the country.

  8. But he’s so much fun (shameless self promotion):

  9. Great way to reduce the number of ATM’s out there. Way to show ’em Bernie.

  10. Sevo where are you ? I know you have been working on something like this. Bad article, but still.…..tes-possi/

  11. Jesus Christ are we REALLY back to ATM fees?

    1. Soon we’ll be hearing about all the wonders of tractor manufacturing.

  12. In my view, it is unacceptable that Americans are paying a $5 fee each time they go to the ATM.

    that’s a lie. We’re not.

  13. Bernie’s just trying to free us from the slavery of having too many financial options, that’s all!

    1. This. Why are people complaining? I also wonder what the single state approved Bernie Sanders shoe and deodorant will be like? The shoe will probably be a plain brown loafer he personally recommended to FDR back in the 20’s, and the deodorant will have that musky, nursing home smell.

      Sounds wonderful to me.

  14. Is he still kicking Hillary’s ass or has Bernie’s season passed?

    1. I dont think he even wants it in the first place

      1. He’s certainly hitting all the right free-shit notes.

        1. True but if he was in it to win he wouldnt have slobbered all over not wanting to hear about her emails thing.

          He is just really really dumb.

          1. He is just really really dumb.

            Well… yeah.

  15. Christ, what a moron.

    A) Who the hell is paying $5? I live in NYC, use a fair range of ATMs, and the highest fee I’ve ever seen is maybe $3.75.
    B) Why the flying fuck are ATM fees any of the President’s business, exactly?
    C) Even if people were paying $5, and it were somehow within the President’s proper range of powers to oversee, anyone who gave it thirty seconds of thought might realize that there could be side effects to dictating prices by fiat.

    Of course, none of that applies if you think economics is evil juju invented by top hat-wearing capitalists to bamboozle the working man, and that the role of the President is to be the nation’s Daddy, I guess.

    1. He gets his ATM knowledge from the ones at Strip Clubs and casinos.

      1. Haha i thought the exact same thing! Only place i have been with fees over 4 dollars

        1. A great presser question:

          “Senator Sanders, you have mentioned that Americans are paying a $5.00 fee to use ATMs. I’ve only seen fees that high at strip clubs. Where else have you seen fees like that?”

      2. I…have a friend who told me about checking out the ATM at a strip club in Vegas. $10 fee PLUS $2.50 for every $20 withdrawn.

    2. Comrade sanders is trying to win over the las vegas casino and strip club vote

    3. “Why the flying fuck are ATM fees any of the President’s business, exactly?

      “Progressives” seem to have this belief that since the government builds infrastructure (with OUR tax dollars, in the first place) and that most people use said infrastructure for business, then every product and service produced actually belongs to the government, and they can decide how all of the goods should be distributed and how much they should cost.

      Which is kind of like if I came to your house and fixed your broken fence without being asked, then demanded a cut of your paycheck, and also told you that I have the right to dictate how your household will be run since I’ve expended some labor and now have a stake in its management. Never mind the fact that you may have fixed the fence yourself, or paid someone else to fix it for a better price – you’re drawing a benefit from a service that I “provided” to you, so you’ve hereby sacrificed your personal autonomy and property rights.

      1. Of course they dont think this applies to their pwn property

    4. Statists think laws take effect on passage, and enforcement is just details for the hirelings.

      Statists also think symptoms can be changed to back-affect the causes. I am truly surprised they haven’t tried to twirl speedometer needles to change speed.

  16. I probably had a bank account or two that refunded all ATM fees for the last 14 years or so. I guess I just couldn’t wait for President Sanders’s Administration to solve the problem

    1. Schwab and Fidelity do that.

        1. As does Ally, which is an online-only branch of GMAC. I go there for the sweet 1% APR on my savings.

    2. Well, if Sanders had his way (either by election or a bunch of Congressional Morons legislating it), you could kiss that little benefit goodbye.

      1. I have no doubt about it.

  17. I think we have to forgive Bernie, the only time he uses an ATM is in a strip club.

    1. “I put the bills in the slot, but I didn’t get a receipt!”


    1. Women and children hardest hit

  19. Facepalm

  20. How much economic sophistication do you expect from someone who showed a lack of understanding of what collateral is, got publicly spanked for it, and used the exact same argument two months later as though nothing had happened?

    1. He’s a leftist, the economic powers that be only charge fees so they can exploit the underclass for profit. He literally cannot conceive of any other reason people would willingly exchange their money with people who are rich.

      1. Who does the labor involved in using the ATM?

        The customer, that’s who.

        Therefore, ATM’s exploit the working class.

        People who use ATM’s should be paid a fee when they use the ATM.

        That’s called labor theory of value.

    2. P.S. I cannot remember the last time I paid an ATM fee. Planning ahead and using one’s own bank are things.

      1. Socialists oppose policies that are effectively a tax on stupidity and impulsiveness.

      2. I pay them all the time, I just withdraw the max so it ends up be a fraction of a percent. 2 out of 400 ain’t bad.

    3. If we’d return to the good old days of loansharking, then we could collect on an unpaid student loan debt.

  21. I’ll cap it a $1!

    No way someone can top that.

    1. I’ll force banks to pay you to use the ATM.

  22. God.

    This retarded shit again?

    Let’s talk about ideas which were popular with college kids back in the late 1990’s.

    Go, go socialism!

    Now, that’s called solving complex problems through better government.

  23. This is just so fucking stupid.

    You know what you get when ATM’s have limits on fees?

    You get an ATM screen that says:

    “Thanks for using MegaBankCorp’s ATM. This service is for MegaBankCorp customers and account holders only. Free-loading socialist shitheads who demand free services from companies they do no real business with are free to go fuck themselves. Have a nice day!”

    1. You will also get banks saying “Sorry we have to cancel your no-fee account, but the Fed ordered us to charge everyone the same amount.”

  24. Cash is strictly for drug deals. Plan ahead so you don’t have to pay an ATM fee, you stupid stoners.

    1. I thought cash was for closers!

    2. Or join a credit union, which greatly expands your network or fee-free ATMs.

    3. Cash back from debit purchases. It ain’t rocket surgery…

      1. I’d like to buy this can of coke, and take 80 bucks

  25. What do we expect from a man who believes the economic equivalent of creation science?

  26. What kind of a sucker is paying ATM fees? If you use one of the big (evil) banks that are everywhere, there is always an ATM around. Also, most places take cards and you can get cash back all over.

  27. Here’s a solution that doesn’t require federal legislation and screwing up the market: get a checking account with one of the dozens of banks that reimburse ATM fees.

    1. Oh, sure, solve the problem without Bernie’s interference help!

  28. You know what? I agree with Bernie. Five dollars is quite a lot to pay just to get some cash out.

    So Bernie should loosen regulations on the banking industry so that we can have more banks to choose from, more ATMs in town, and more competition to drive the ATM fee down to practically nothing.

    I assume this is what Bernie Sanders is talking about doing, since that’s the only strategy that makes one damn bit of economic sense. I mean, Bernie Sanders would have to be completely ignorant of economics to propose any other solution!


  29. No one needs more than 1 dollar

    1. And I’m sure very few people (outside of government employees and a few of their favored corporations) would have more than one of those if Bernie Sanders had his way.

  30. Finally, someone addressing my most pressing problem.

  31. I know you have good intentions, Bern. And I know that compared to that most soulless of foul creatures, Hillary, that you really are a saint. And I really mean that. But you are fucking clueless economically. You actually have to educate yourself on this economy thing, Bern, and use reason and logic. You can’t just emote everything into unicorns and rainbow colored utopia.

  32. The party of diversity…. Old, white and evil or old, white and stupid

  33. this is evidence that he and people like him aren’t just interested in the big stuff. they have no limiting principle and will define/regulate anything/everything to meet their exact specifications for what they think you need. it’s not even based on a sense of fairness, because if that’s the case, why is 2 fair and 3 not? why stop at 2?

  34. OTOH I don’t think Bernie’s stupid or economically illiterate in this instance.

    If he really wants to do socialism, then ATMs are a bug, not a feature. They give you cash, which you can spend any damn way you please. Social justice would be much more efficient if there were no ATMs, no cash-back, no cash at all. Then you’d have to make all exchanges electronically, and traceable.

  35. I believe this was right after he came out against video rental stores charging a rewind fee.

  36. Well fuck, we’re saved.

  37. Dah Fees

    are TOO DAMNED


  38. In my view, it is unacceptable that Americans get a +25% tax rate kicked in just about as soon as they manage to do above average.

    But, yeah. ATM fees. Bummer.

  39. Join a bank or credit union which doesn’t charge for using ATMs outside of its network; they exist, you just have to shop a little. My bank reimburses you at the end of the month for third party ATM fees on top of that (it is a community bank, not a national or regional).

    The credit union co-op is one of the largest ATM networks out there (including every single 7-11).

    If you’re getting nickeled and dimed using ATMs, then you haven’t put in the effort to have it stop.

  40. I sure hope that dumbass pledge comes with another dumbass pledge to ban maximum withdrawal limits. Otherwise, a warm welcome to suddenly having to perform four separate transactions to get a hundred bucks out, probably even on ATMs that right now are free for the bank’s actual customers.

    How is this presidential business in any way?

    How about let’s worry about the thousands of dollars a year that gets taken away from working-class families by a massive unaccountable organization run by out-of-touch bureaucrats, and then once that’s fixed we can stop talking about the federal government and rightfully put the focus on some dude paying eight dollars a month to use the services of a bank he doesn’t bank with.

    1. ban maximum withdrawal limits.

      Fuck ya – I want to take out a billion dollars from my ATM and Bernie will see that I will have that right !

  41. Bernie doesn’t handle money.

  42. Why does Mr. Sanders thinks he needs to make this decision for us?
    I can’t remember the last time I paid one of these fees. My bank doesn’t charge for ATMs for its own customers and they have my neck of the woods blanketed with them.
    If I want to use someone else’s ATM then I can understand why I have to pay a fee for this. The machines are not free. So it is up to be to decide to pay the fee or not.

  43. There are times it’s worth paying 5$ to get to your cash. Also, one obvious alternative is simply to carry around you cash on you. There is no basic human right to an ATM machine (at least not yet).

  44. I wonder if Bernie thinks the cash gets into the ATM by magic.

  45. Socialist crybaby – boo hoo hoo

  46. uh charles schwabb bank and scottrade bank both provide refunds each month for all atm fees incurred..

  47. Ship Sanders down to Venezuela where they did exactly what he proposes–put a cap on prices for “essential products.”

    The citizens down there would LOVE to have even ONE choice of deodorant on their empty store shelves and would faint at the sight of dozens of choices–why doesn’t this idiot see that when it’s happening right now, in real living color, not in some obscure pages of some dusty history book?!

  48. And then when banks do indeed start eliminating ATMs … “Uh oh, market failure! Capitialism is failing to meet the needs of the people!” The solution is obvious: mandate that banks deploy a certain number of ATMs. Of course they then will only deploy them in certain areas – the areas that cause them the least financial loss. So the certain racial/socioeconomic groups will not be served, and then it will be necessary for gov’t to control WHERE they are deployed as well. Bingo, a new gov’t agency! If you accept the initial premise of price controls on ATMs, then the rest flows logically.

  49. And then when banks do indeed start eliminating ATMs … “Uh oh, market failure! Capitialism is failing to meet the needs of the people!” The solution is obvious: mandate that banks deploy a certain number of ATMs. Of course they then will only deploy them in certain areas – the areas that cause them the least financial loss. So the certain racial/socioeconomic groups will not be served, and then it will be necessary for gov’t to control WHERE they are deployed as well. Bingo, a new gov’t agency! If you accept the initial premise of price controls on ATMs, then the rest flows logically.

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