10 ways fintech, payments are on the ballot in the 2020 House election
As the House of Representatives enters the 2020 election season, the outcome stands to encourage or rein in a group of technology companies that are encroaching deeper into financial services.
The representatives voters send to Congress in 2021 will play a role in deciding how much of a “bank” big technology companies like Facebook can be, and how much power Amazon and Google can have over data, marketing and digital commerce. There’s a general consensus that these companies have a concerning amount of power, but Republicans and Democrats have different views on how to regulate the world’s technology giants.
The Red/Blue divide will also help determine the role government plays in enabling cash access, delivery of coronavirus stimulus, a central bank digital currency, enabling financial inclusion, cryptocurrency, cannabis and a host of other issues that guide how merchants and consumers conduct business.
Unlike the presidential and Senate races, where the basic power divide hangs in the balance, there’s probably not as much drama in the overall House election. Most of the issues that affect financial services are championed by members of the House whose seats are not in immediate jeopardy.
The House of Representatives has 232 Democrats, 197 Republicans, five vacancies and one Libertarian. All 435 seats are up for election, and the polling favors the Democrats holding their majority. 538.com projects the Democrats have a 94% chance of keeping control, with an 80% chance of holding between 221 and 253 seats. So the overall House bent toward stricter regulations for financial institutions and more power for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, for example, will likely stay the same.
The financial services industry is more conservative than liberal, and while both sides prefer a sweep for their own party, they predict some form of divided government is the likely outcome of the 2020 election, according to a survey by Arizent, which publishes PaymentsSource and other financial services publications.