Dear friends and neighbors,
Last Friday, after adopting a handful of amendments and getting through a heated debate, the House of Representatives passed the Washington Privacy Act and sent it back to the Senate.
Today, the Senate refused to concur and asked the House to recede from our amendments. So now we’re discussing options.
The bill, as passed by the House, would strengthen the ability of consumers to exercise newly proposed data privacy rights in our state.
In my Floor remarks on final passage, as a member of the House Innovation, Technology & Economic Development Committee, I underscored that there are more benefits than risks in passing this legislation that I truly believe is not only good, but necessary.
Click on the image to watch my speech or read the transcript below.
Thank you, Madam Speaker.
We’ve heard a lot of clichés on the floor tonight:
- It’s never too late to do the right thing.
- Let’s not make the perfect the enemy of the good.
- If everyone’s not satisfied it must be the right policy.
- Politics is the art of the possible.
We’re all here to serve the people we represent and the entire state, not just the people we know in our district.
This bill is the beginning of clarification in a new frontier.
One of the thoughts I have about this is that it comes down to two questions: What are the risks if we don’t do a bill tonight and what are the benefits if we do?
If we don’t do a bill, we leave the Wild West without a sheriff, a preacher or a mom.
We leave our amazing and innovative businesses that we depend on and that we love, and we respect without guidelines and without clarity on where we want to go. A lot of those businesses do want a bill. Almost every business that came to testify didn’t like something somewhere along the line, but a lot of them came together and a lot of compromises were already made, and we’re not done.
We leave our citizens without clarity on what their rights are in this space and with the Constitution that we have and that we honor.
What do we get if we do move ahead?
We articulate the rights of our citizens in a digital age that’s rapidly changing.
We strike a good balance between privacy and innovation.
And we freely know that this is a moving target.
We are lucky to be the third big entity that’s taken good action on this and everybody that comes after us will probably make some improvements that we’ll learn from and we’ll take forward later.
We let our businesses know what our values are. And the good actors know where we want to be, where we want to go. And the bad actors know what our boundaries are or are going to be when we have more clarity.
We have a framework that we can build on.
We’re not done, but I believe—and I am hopeful—that this first step is not just good, but necessary.