Citing Lack of Protections for Californians, Eshoo Opposes Federal Privacy Bill

July 20, 2022
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.U.S. Rep. Anna G. Eshoo (CA-18) today voted against the American Data Privacy and Protection Act (ADPPA) at a full Committee markup.

“California has the best privacy protections in the country thanks to the California Privacy Rights Act and a successful ballot initiative passed by the voters. Together, these policies provide certain inalienable rights for individuals to access their personal information, delete that information, and stop the sale of that information. California also has an expert state agency dedicated to protecting the privacy and data of Californians.

“The bill we voted on today threatens Californians’ right to access, delete, and prevent the sale of their information by overriding California law. It calls into question the state agency’s authority to enforce privacy protections, and it prevents California from strengthening privacy protections in the future,” said Eshoo. “While I’m sensitive to industry concerns that we don’t create a patchwork system of regulations, Congress has historically addressed this by allowing states to enact stronger protections when practicable and compatible. States need flexibility to respond to changes in technology and expand rights where necessary. Governor Newsom, Attorney General Bonta, and the California Privacy Protection Agency have all echoed my concerns that the federal legislation diminishes consumer protections in California. While this law would be an improvement for much of the country, I can’t say the same for my constituents and all Californians.”

“The bill also has a loophole that could allow law enforcement to access private data to go after people seeking abortions. For example, under this bill, a sinister prosecutor in a state that criminalizes abortion could use women’s intimate data from search histories or from reproductive health apps against them. In this new post-Roe world where the Supreme Court has stripped away the rights of women and potentially criminalized routine reproductive are, this loophole must be addressed,” said Eshoo.

Eshoo introduced an amendment to protect California’s ability to strengthen privacy protections in the future. The amendment did not pass, and Eshoo voted against final passage of the ADPPA.

You can view Eshoo’s remarks at the markup and on her amendment here and here.