Cybersecurity Information-Sharing Bill Heading for Approval in Senate
NEWS ANALYSIS: Despite opposition by Silicon Valley and tech industry advocates, security sharing legislation will probably pass the Senate this week.Barring some potential, but unlikely, parliamentary maneuvers, the U.S. Senate will probably pass the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act the week of Oct. 26. The bill survived the procedural process last week, and if it's approved by the full Senate, then Congress may consider a number of amendments intended to answer some of the most significant objections. The vote on the full bill is scheduled for Oct. 27, assuming that nothing interrupts the vote, which is always possible. Senate rules allow members great latitude in how bills progress to an eventual vote. For example, a senator can put a hold on a bill for any number of reasons and while such a hold can be overcome by a 60-vote supermajority, that takes time and could result in the bill eventually becoming superseded by other legislation, such as approving the rise in the debt limit. In addition, proposed amendments to the bill could be approved or they could be dismissed in their entirety in parliamentary wrangling. Because most of those amendments address concerns in the privacy aspects of the bill, such a change could also delay passage.
However the procedural vote that sent the bill to the full Senate for action passed by a lopsided 83-to-14 margin, far more than the 60-vote margin required to pass the bill. This would indicate that the votes are there to overcome any attempts to block passage, except in unusual circumstances.