Senators Agreed on 22 CISA Amendments, but Some May Not Get a Vote

Sen. Dianne Feinstein said cutting down on the agreed-upon package of amendments could help with timing in a busy season.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein participates in a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, July 8, 2015.
Mark Wilson AFP/Getty
Sept. 9, 2015, 6:10 p.m.

The 22 amend­ments to the Cy­ber­se­cur­ity In­form­a­tion-Shar­ing Act that sen­at­ors agreed upon be­fore re­cess may not all get a vote, Sen. Di­anne Fein­stein, one of the bill’s co-spon­sors, said Wed­nes­day.

The next few months of the Sen­ate’s time will largely be taken up by de­bate over ap­pro­pri­ations and Pres­id­ent Obama’s nuc­le­ar deal with Ir­an, leav­ing little time for the cy­ber­se­cur­ity bill and the bevy of pro­posed amend­ments that will go along with it.

To make room for de­bate on the in­form­a­tion-shar­ing bill, some of the amend­ments may not get a vote, Fein­stein told Na­tion­al Journ­al.

“I don’t know if there will be 22 amend­ments,” the Cali­for­nia Demo­crat said. “Everything changes week to week. I’m more con­cerned with get­ting the bill up, try­ing to get it passed, get­ting it con­fer­enced, and then get­ting the con­fer­ence re­port ap­proved.”

“A short­er de­bate means few­er amend­ments, be­cause you have to com­plete the de­bate,” Fein­stein ad­ded. She said she did not know which amend­ments may not get voted on.

The bill Fein­stein co-sponsored with Sen. Richard Burr, a Re­pub­lic­an, is meant to im­prove cy­ber­se­cur­ity in gov­ern­ment and in the private sec­tor by cre­at­ing in­cent­ives for busi­nesses to share in­form­a­tion about cy­ber­threats with each oth­er and with fed­er­al agen­cies.

The agree­ment sen­at­ors reached be­fore leav­ing in Au­gust was to make pending a group of 22 amend­ments: 10 from Re­pub­lic­ans, 11 from Demo­crats, and a man­ager’s amend­ment from the bill’s spon­sors. The amend­ments ad­dress a wide range of is­sues, in­clud­ing pri­vacy pro­tec­tions for in­di­vidu­als, li­ab­il­ity pro­tec­tions for com­pan­ies, and the struc­ture of the shar­ing pro­gram it­self.

“It’s not known yet if all will be voted on,” said Don Stew­art, a spokes­man for Sen­ate Ma­jor­ity Lead­er Mitch Mc­Con­nell.

Still, be­cause sen­at­ors agreed in Au­gust to make the amend­ments pending, a move to dis­pose of one or more would re­quire a vote—or the amend­ment could be with­drawn by its spon­sor.

Some sen­at­ors who fought hard to put for­ward changes to the bill may try to block at­tempts to cut down on the amend­ments that get con­sidered.

“I’m cer­tainly not go­ing to cas­u­ally give un­an­im­ous con­sent to chop off amend­ments,” said Sen. Ron Wyden, who has re­peatedly cri­ti­cized CISA for what he says are lackluster pri­vacy pro­tec­tions. Wyden is the spon­sor of mul­tiple amend­ments in the pack­age that was ne­go­ti­ated be­fore re­cess.

“What I agreed on with re­spect to this is­sue is that there would be 22 amend­ments—and no time lim­its, by the way,” Wyden said.

The in­form­a­tion-shar­ing bill and its amend­ments have pit­ted pri­vacy ad­voc­ates and se­cur­ity ex­perts against busi­nesses. Pri­vacy ad­voc­ates say the bill could res­ult in com­pan­ies im­prop­erly shar­ing in­di­vidu­als’ sens­it­ive per­son­al in­form­a­tion with the gov­ern­ment—in­clud­ing law-en­force­ment and sur­veil­lance agen­cies—and they are lob­by­ing for the Sen­ate to drop CISA. Tech ex­perts say there are more ef­fect­ive ways to im­prove cy­ber­se­cur­ity than in­form­a­tion-shar­ing.

But the busi­ness com­munity has come out in sup­port of the bill, cit­ing the need for more pro­tec­tions against cy­ber­at­tacks. Com­pan­ies stand to gain from the li­ab­il­ity pro­tec­tions in the bill, which are de­signed to in­centiv­ize shar­ing.

Since sen­at­ors are cur­rently mired in de­bate over the Ir­an deal, it’s not clear when the bill and its amend­ments—whatever the num­ber—would come up for con­sid­er­a­tion. Mul­tiple law­makers said Wed­nes­day they hope it gets a vote, but the Sen­ate’s sched­ule re­mains murky.

CISA will come up “even­tu­ally,” said Stew­art, Mc­Con­nell’s spokes­man. “Could be Septem­ber, could be Oc­to­ber, could be Novem­ber. We don’t know yet.”

What We're Following See More »
DEMOCRATS WILL INTRODUCE RESOLUTION ON FRIDAY
Pelosi Pushing Legislation to End National Emergency
9 hours ago
THE DETAILS

"Speaker Nancy Pelosi is throwing her muscle behind a legislative effort to block President Donald Trump’s national emergency declaration, the first formal step to counter Trump and squeeze Republicans on the border wall. Democrats will introduce legislation Friday to terminate the emergency proclamation and Pelosi is urging House colleagues on both sides of the aisle to support the resolution, according to a letter obtained by POLITICO on Wednesday."

Source:
IT IS A PUBLIC HEARING
Cohen Testifying at House Oversight Feb. 27
11 hours ago
THE LATEST
AVOIDS SHUTDOWN WITH A FEW HOURS TO SPARE
Trump Signs Border Deal
5 days ago
THE LATEST

"President Trump signed a sweeping spending bill Friday afternoon, averting another partial government shutdown. The action came after Trump had declared a national emergency in a move designed to circumvent Congress and build additional barriers at the southern border, where he said the United States faces 'an invasion of our country.'"

Source:
REDIRECTS $8 BILLION
Trump Declares National Emergency
5 days ago
THE DETAILS

"President Donald Trump on Friday declared a state of emergency on the southern border and immediately direct $8 billion to construct or repair as many as 234 miles of a border barrier. The move — which is sure to invite vigorous legal challenges from activists and government officials — comes after Trump failed to get the $5.7 billion he was seeking from lawmakers. Instead, Trump agreed to sign a deal that included just $1.375 for border security."

Source:
COULD SOW DIVISION AMONG REPUBLICANS
House Will Condemn Emergency Declaration
5 days ago
THE DETAILS

"House Democrats are gearing up to pass a joint resolution disapproving of President Trump’s emergency declaration to build his U.S.-Mexico border wall, a move that will force Senate Republicans to vote on a contentious issue that divides their party. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) said Thursday evening in an interview with The Washington Post that the House would take up the resolution in the coming days or weeks. The measure is expected to easily clear the Democratic-led House, and because it would be privileged, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) would be forced to put the resolution to a vote that he could lose."

Source:
×
×

Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.

Login