Republicans to Open 2014 With Obamacare Data-Theft Bill

The GOP is pushing legislation that would require the administration to disclose any security breaches on the exchanges.

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 16: House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) (C) arrives for a meeting of House Republicans at the U.S. Capitol October 16, 2013 in Washington, DC. Boehner met with the Republican Conference after the Senate announced earlier that it had reached a bipartisan deal on funding the federal government and extending the nation's debt limit after 16 days of a government shutdown.
National Journal
Clara Ritger
Add to Briefcase
Clara Ritger
Jan. 2, 2014, 12:42 p.m.

House Re­pub­lic­ans will start the year with le­gis­la­tion aimed at se­cur­ity re­quire­ments for Obama­care’s health in­sur­ance ex­changes.

The House next week will con­sider le­gis­la­tion that would re­quire the Cen­ters for Medi­care and Medi­caid Ser­vices to no­ti­fy con­sumers whenev­er a se­cur­ity breach oc­curs, House Ma­jor­ity Lead­er Eric Can­tor an­nounced Thursday in a memo to Re­pub­lic­ans.

Un­der present policy, CMS eval­u­ates wheth­er con­sumer data were at risk when de­cid­ing if an is­sue war­rants no­ti­fic­a­tion — but Can­tor wants to make no­ti­fic­a­tion auto­mat­ic.

“If a breach oc­curs, it shouldn’t be up to some bur­eau­crat to de­cide when or even wheth­er to in­form an in­di­vidu­al that their per­son­al in­form­a­tion has been ac­cessed,” Can­tor said in the memo.

The le­gis­la­tion would ad­dress oth­er se­cur­ity con­cerns, he said, cit­ing Re­pub­lic­an Reps. Di­ane Black of Ten­ness­ee, Kerry Bentivolio of Michigan, and Gus Bi­lira­kis of Flor­ida among those who have pro­posed sim­il­ar meas­ures.

Se­cur­ity and pri­vacy con­cerns have been the fo­cus of a hand­ful of hear­ings on Cap­it­ol Hill, where doc­u­ments re­vealed that the Health and Hu­man Ser­vices De­part­ment and con­tract­ors in­volved in the cre­ation of Health­Care.gov were con­cerned in the days and weeks lead­ing up to the web­site’s launch.

Ul­ti­mately, the move is a part of the House Re­pub­lic­an goal to re­peal and re­place the pres­id­ent’s health law.

Drew Ham­mill, spokes­man for House Minor­ity Lead­er Nancy Pelosi, called Can­tor’s an­nounce­ment a par­tis­an game.

House Re­pub­lic­ans “con­tin­ue to re­main in­tent on un­der­min­ing or re­peal­ing the Af­ford­able Care Act at every turn, and that ef­fort even ex­tends to scar­ing their con­stitu­ents from ob­tain­ing health cov­er­age,” Ham­mill said in a press re­lease.

The ques­tion of data se­cur­ity on the ex­changes is hotly con­tested. Re­pub­lic­ans ar­gue the ad­min­is­tra­tion is down­play­ing con­cerns to pro­tect the law’s stand­ing and en­cour­age en­roll­ment, while Demo­crats ar­gue the GOP is over­stat­ing the prob­lems and craft­ing le­gis­la­tion to bring more at­ten­tion to them.

In Decem­ber, Rep. Henry Wax­man, D-Cal­if., re­leased part of a clas­si­fied HHS brief­ing that re­por­ted only 32 se­cur­ity in­cid­ents since Oct. 1, none of which in­volved a suc­cess­ful theft of any in­form­a­tion.

Some 2.1 mil­lion Amer­ic­ans signed up for private health in­sur­ance on the ex­changes in time for Jan. 1 cov­er­age, as long as they paid their premi­ums. The Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion has re­peatedly said in con­gres­sion­al hear­ings that it does not be­lieve con­sumer data to be at risk, be­cause the data hub used by Health­Care.gov to veri­fy iden­tity and in­come does not store per­son­al in­form­a­tion.

The House re­turns Tues­day, Jan. 7.

What We're Following See More »
WITH LIVE BLOGGING
Trump Deposition Video Is Online
23 hours ago
STAFF PICKS

The video of Donald Trump's deposition in his case against restaurateur Jeffrey Zakarian is now live. Slate's Jim Newell and Josh Voorhees are live-blogging it while they watch.

Source:
SOUND LEVEL AFFECTED
Debate Commission Admits Issues with Trump’s Mic
1 days ago
THE LATEST

The Commission on Presidential Debates put out a statement today that gives credence to Donald Trump's claims that he had a bad microphone on Monday night. "Regarding the first debate, there were issues regarding Donald Trump's audio that affected the sound level in the debate hall," read the statement in its entirety.

Source:
TRUMP VS. CHEFS
Trump Deposition Video to Be Released
1 days ago
THE LATEST

"A video of Donald Trump testifying under oath about his provocative rhetoric about Mexicans and other Latinos is set to go public" as soon as today. "Trump gave the testimony in June at a law office in Washington in connection with one of two lawsuits he filed last year after prominent chefs reacted to the controversy over his remarks by pulling out of plans to open restaurants at his new D.C. hotel. D.C. Superior Court Judge Brian Holeman said in an order issued Thursday evening that fears the testimony might show up in campaign commercials were no basis to keep the public from seeing the video."

Source:
A CANDIDATE TO BE ‘PROUD’ OF
Chicago Tribune Endorses Gary Johnson
1 days ago
THE LATEST

No matter that his recall of foreign leaders leaves something to be desired, Gary Johnson is the choice of the Chicago Tribune's editorial board. The editors argue that Donald Trump couldn't do the job of president, while hitting Hillary Clinton for "her intent to greatly increase federal spending and taxation, and serious questions about honesty and trust." Which leaves them with Johnson. "Every American who casts a vote for him is standing for principles," they write, "and can be proud of that vote. Yes, proud of a candidate in 2016."

NEVER TRUMP
USA Today Weighs in on Presidential Race for First Time Ever
1 days ago
THE DETAILS

"By all means vote, just not for Donald Trump." That's the message from USA Today editors, who are making the first recommendation on a presidential race in the paper's 34-year history. It's not exactly an endorsement; they make clear that the editorial board "does not have a consensus for a Clinton endorsement." But they state flatly that Donald Trump is, by "unanimous consensus of the editorial board, unfit for the presidency."

Source:
×