House Republicans Release Privacy Framework

November 05, 2021

House Energy and Commerce Committee Republicans’ comprehensive consumer privacy framework, which does not cover HR data, signals increased activity in the House on the issue, while highlighting areas of disagreement between the parties. 

HR data not covered:  The framework does not cover “information that is collected, used, or shared solely for the purpose of employment of an individual.” 

Broad preemption:  The framework would disallow state or local governments from making new laws or enforcing existing ones “related to the collection, use, or sharing of personal information by or on behalf of a covered entity.”  This is a broader approach to preemption than some other Republican privacy bills have made in the past. 

No private right of action:  Whereas some Senate Republicans have expressed interest in finding a compromise in the private right of action area, the House Republican framework does not leave room for applying a private right of action to enforce its provisions. 

Outlook:  In 2019, Committee Republicans and Democrats released a bipartisan framework, raising hopes that the two sides were close to an agreement.  It remains to be seen whether the parties can demonstrate similar bipartisanship in crafting a comprehensive consumer data privacy measure going forward.  Doing so will be necessary before any such bill gains traction given the current makeup of Congress.