The decision by 10 states to file a brief supporting the Justice Department in its antitrust case against Visa and MasterCard International stems from a 10-year-old lawsuit that these states filed against the card companies over the development of debit cards.

The states, led by Ohio, said their interest in the current case relates to their 1990 antitrust suit against Visa and MasterCard's attempt to create a joint debit card program called Entrée. The states argued that this program would create a monopoly in the point of sale debit card market. The case was settled when Visa and MasterCard abandoned the project and agreed to create separate debit cards.

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