Republicans on Wednesday thwarted Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd's (D-Conn.) attempt to begin quick debate on his bill to freeze credit card interest rates and fees.

When the Connecticut Democrat unexpectedly asked the chamber's unanimous consent to consider the bill, Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) promptly objected on the behalf of several of his GOP colleagues, preventing debate.


That move, however, later prompted Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) to take the podium and reprimand his Republican counterparts for stalling debate and subjecting Americans in the meantime to high credit card interest rates and fees.

Dodd's effort, introduced in October, builds off the reforms codified into law earlier this year by the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure (CARD) Act -- another interest rate freeze bill Dodd authored.

However, the Democratic senator's original effort was not tough enough to prevent credit card companies from scrambling to increase their fees while the law's provisions went into effect, Dodd admitted back in October.

Under the new bill, rates would instead be immediately frozen, ending "those abuses and further protect[ing] customers," Dodd said in a statement describing the bill last month.

“At a time when families are struggling to make ends meet, jacked-up rates can quickly create crushing debt," Dodd added. "People need to be responsible with their money, but they shouldn’t be taken to the cleaners by outrageous rates.”