Eshoo Votes for Bicameral Bill to End Scourge of Robocalls

December 4, 2019
Press Release
House of Representatives Passes Bipartisan TRACED Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Congresswoman Anna G. Eshoo (D-CA) voted for the bipartisan Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence (TRACED) Act, legislation that will bring much needed relief to Americans who are subjected to abusive robocall practices. Americans received an unfathomable 48 billion robocalls last year, and a near-record 5.5 billion calls in November of this year.

“I’m proud to pass legislation to help end the scourge of robocalls,” Rep. Eshoo said. “These calls are highly annoying, but they are also used to swindle unsuspecting victims. Last year, 43 million Americans were scammed out of $10.5 billion. This bipartisan legislation will ensure there is a cop on the beat to protect my constituents and the American people against the harassment and fraud perpetuated by robocalls.”

The TRACED Act passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 417-3. The bill:

  • Requires that phone carriers implement call authentication technology so consumers can trust their caller ID again;
  • Requires carriers to offer call blocking services to consumers at no additional charge, with important transparency safeguards to make sure important calls are not inadvertently blocked;
  • Directs the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to issue rules to protect consumers from calls they didn’t agree to receive and ensures consumers can withdraw consent;
  • Requires the FCC to enact safeguards so companies cannot abuse robocall exemptions; and
  • Ensures the FCC has the authority and the tools to take strong, quick action when it tracks down robocallers, including extending the statute of limitations from one year to as many as four years for callers violating robocall prohibitions.

Rep. Eshoo is a strong advocate for addressing the epidemic of robocalls. In July, she cosponsored the bipartisan Stopping Bad Robocalls Act, which passed the House by a vote of 429 to 3. In April, Eshoo introduced the ROBO Calls and Texts Act of 2019 to crack down on robocalls by creating a new division within the Enforcement Bureau at the FCC, the Robocall Division. Eshoo also introduced the HANGUP Act to protect anyone with a federally-backed loan (student loans, mortgages, veteran loans, farming loans) from unwanted robocalls and texts.