President Barack Obama pressed the U.S. Congress at a town-hall meeting on Thursday to pass credit card reform measures cracking down on abusive practices by credit card companies.

The Senate is expected to vote Thursday night on the proposed credit card legislation.

The critical elements of reform are:

• Ban Unfair Rate Increases

• Prevent Unfair Fee & Interest Rate Charges

• Plain Sight /Plain Language Disclosures

• Market Transparency

• Accountability

• Protections for Students and Young People

We have been complicit in these problems, Obama conceded. But these practices, they have only grown worst in this recession, when hardworking Americans could afford them least.

A White House survey on credit card use, released reflected an increase of 25 percent of credit card debt over the past 10 years reaching $963 billion in January 2009.

Credit card issuers collect $15 billion annually in penalty fees, an estimated 10 percent of total credit card industry revenues.