Published: December 2019Click To View (PDF)

Two noteworthy proposals for a comprehensive federal data privacy law have entered the fray as the debate in U.S. Congress continues. They were introduced in the lead-up to the committee hearing scheduled for Dec. 4 at 10:00 a.m., “Examining Legislative Proposals to Protect Consumer Privacy.” As lawmaking continues, it is worth looking into the similarities and differences between these proposals to see where bipartisan consensus exists, as well as the remaining points of controversy.

Introduced last week by Ranking Member of the Commerce, Science, & Transportation Committee Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., and sponsored by several Senate Democrats, the Consumer Online Privacy Rights Act aims to “provide consumers with foundational data privacy rights, create strong oversight mechanisms, and establish meaningful enforcement.”

From the other side of the aisle, a “Staff Discussion Draft” of the Consumer Data Privacy Act, which is Sen. Roger Wicker’s, R-Miss., proposal for a comprehensive federal data privacy law, was also released over Thanksgiving. Once introduced, the bill is likely to have the backing of several other Senate Republicans.

This piece compares these two legislative proposals to better understand the places where clear-cut similarities, clearcut differences and gray areas are found within these two bills.

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