Take out your wallet.

No, this isn’t a robbery.  Go ahead, take out your wallet.  Pull out a credit card, ATM card, or anything else with a black strip on the back.  Now pull out a dollar bill.

You might think that the dollar bill and the merchant card will each buy you $1.00 worth of goods and services.  Right now, that’s true.  But if Congress gets their way, your merchant card will not get you as far as cold, hard cash.  It could only buy you $0.97 or so of a $1.00 worth of stuff.

So you can be punished for using a merchant card and not trudging around lots of currency?  If Congress gets its way, this scenario will become all too real.

Under legislation being considered right now, you can actually be charged extra just for the privilege of using a credit or debit card.  Essentially, Congress will weigh in on whether you pay with cash or plastic, and will seek to punish you if you make the “wrong” choice.

This cash-is-king mentality is about more than picking winners and losers in your wallet.  It’s about government paternalism.  Congress hopes that you’ll think twice about using a credit card if you have to pay more to do so.  Millions of credit and debit transactions take place every day, and Americans don’t need the government to tell them if they’ve charged too much this month.

There’s an online petition up now to stop Congress from imposing this “merchant card fee” on every American.  Click here to learn more and sign up.