Sun. Jun 23rd, 2024

Congress eyes new online privacy bills ahead of 2024 elections

By 37ci3 May23,2024

WASHINGTON – The The presidential elections is just over five months away, but key Republicans and Democrats in Congress see a critical window to pass sweeping legislation to protect the online data of both children and adults from Big Tech companies.

“I believe there is a point where Congress needs to act on behalf of the American people,” House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairwoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers said in an interview on the Capitol steps.

“In the name of protecting our children online, in order to protect all Americans, there is a recognition that we must ensure that privacy rights exist … and that our identities are protected online and that we control our data,” he said.

The Energy and Commerce subcommittee, which oversees online information, will take the first step toward advancing privacy legislation Thursday through the American Privacy Rights Act, a broad piece of legislation that covers privacy protections for children and adults, as well as Children’s Online Safety Act.

The bills will be sent to the full Energy and Commerce Committee before a possible vote in the House of Representatives in June.

Who is McMorris Rodgers? close to Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., Johnson said he has not committed to a vote on the privacy bill. But he is expected to have strong bipartisan support given that he has spent months working with a powerful Washington state lawmaker, Democrat Maria Cantwell, the chairwoman of the Senate Commerce Committee.

Listen to McMorris Rodgers interview on the “Chuck Toddcast” here.

A revised bill announced this week to allay critics’ concerns.

The American Privacy Act would create national consumer data privacy rights and set federal standards for the security of people’s data, rather than a patchwork of state laws. Among other things, the legislation would require companies to provide accurate information about how people use their data and “give consumers the right to access, correct, delete and export their data.” summary of the bill. The bill would also limit companies’ data collection and use practices and prohibit the transfer of certain data to third parties without consent.

The measure includes a bipartisan bill to protect children’s and teens’ online information COPPA 2.0.

“I see the American Privacy Act as the foundation for protecting children online, the foundation for protecting our individual identities online,” McMorris Rodgers said.

Bipartisan privacy bill gathers momentum weeks after McMorris Rodgers and Cantwell. reached a compromise US President Joe Biden signed the TikTok bill into law as part of a larger national security package that would force TikTok’s Chinese owner ByteDance to sell the popular video-sharing app or face a ban.

Passage of the privacy package would be a major legislative victory for McMorris Rodgers, who is retiring after nearly two decades in Congress. Some lawmakers believe that even as the election is in full swing and partisan attacks are flying on Capitol Hill and on the campaign trail, the pair’s chairman can build on their TikTok success.

I like both; they are both really competent,” said Sen. Peter Welch, D-Vt.

“An election year can be seen in two ways: a reason not to [act] and a valid reason to act. People care about their privacy; it’s a big problem, and they’re interested in how we’re pushing the technology to protect them,” Welch added. “So I think it’s good election-year politics for both parties.”

R-Ind. Sen. Todd Young, another member of the Commerce Committee, said he is still reviewing the bill, but that he supports comprehensive national data privacy legislation “in concept.”

“I think there might be a window of opportunity,” Young said in an interview. “This is obviously a difficult issue, so the development of a national standard has been going on for several years, and no solution has been found.

“But I think the recent legislative successes we’ve had on that front with the ongoing U.S.-China rivalry and a true AI revolution,” he said, “these two things may create a new enthusiasm for the subject.”

While pushing to reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration this month, Democrats and Republicans on the Senate Commerce Committee gathered on the chamber floor to discuss ways to move the privacy package forward, said Sen. Ben Ray Lujan, DNM. in negotiations.

“I believe there is room and momentum and support to do this before the end of the calendar year,” Lujan said.

Not all members of the House and Senate commerce committees are still on staff. Ted Cruz of Texas, the top Republican on the Senate Commerce Committee, is considering updated legislation; he pointed to a statement he made last month in response to the first bill unveiled in April: “I do not support any data privacy bill that empowers trial lawyers, empowers Big Tech by imposing new regulatory costs on start-up competitors, or gives unprecedented power to the FTC.” cannot support. to be the arbiter of internet access and DEI compatibility.”

“DEI” is the beginning of “diversity, equality and inclusion” measures.

And Rep. D-Calif., who represents parts of Silicon Valley. Anna Eshoo sent Cantwell a memo detailing concerns about the April bill. Eshoo doesn’t want the federal law to preempt stricter state privacy laws like California’s. And a a post-Dobbs dominated worldWith the Supreme Court striking down federal abortion rights, Eshoo wants to close potential loopholes in the legislation that could expose women’s reproductive health information. His team is still reviewing a new version of the bill.

“I researched the draft, reviewed it, talked to experts and sent it to the chairman and ranking member, as well as any member who asked me what I thought,” Eshoo said Wednesday.

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