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One Wisconsin House member votes against credit card reforms

Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Janesville, was the only Wisconsin House member to vote against the credit card reforms sent to President Obama on Wednesday.

All seven other Wisconsin members voted in favor of the bill, which passed 361-64.

David Obey, D-Wausau, says it will stop the practice of raising a card's interest rate for behavior not related to that card, or using fine print to hide fees and other major conditions.

Obama plans to sign the bill Friday, and the changes will take effect in nine months.

Among other things, card-holders would have to be more than 60 days behind on their payments before interest goes up on their existing balances.

Card companies would have to let customers block purchases which exceed their credit limits, instead of just imposing large over-the-limit fees.

And young people under 21 cannot get new credit cards unless they have the means to repay their debts or if their parents co-sign for them.

The banking industry opposed the changes, saying it will be harder to get credit.

But Obey says the rules are needed to "keep the big boys honest and playing fair."

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