Another fancy part of this crafty lil omnibus bill. DId they really draw all this out just so they could ram us with this kind of bullshit?
Current U.S. law would help to protect against disclosure of information that is likely to be used to commit human rights abuses, like detention or torture. This is key given Turkey’s troubling human rights record. That’s because there is a robust process in place to ensure that the U.S. government only shares such information in cases where these requests have been closely vetted by the Department of Justice and a U.S. judge, who ensures that individuals’ rights are being protected.
But legislation is being introduced now that would allow countries’ to bypass these safeguards and give Attorney General Jeff Sessions and presumptive Secretary of State Mike Pompeo extensive and nearly unchecked power over global digital privacy rights.
This is really bad!
If the CLOUD Act passes, the executive branch will be able to sidestep Congress when it comes to data sharing agreements.
The bill would give the attorney general and the secretary of State the authority to enter into data exchange agreements with foreign governments without congressional approval.
The country they enter into agreements with need not meet strict human rights standards – the bill only stipulates that the executive branch consider as a factor whether a government “demonstrates respect” for human rights and is similarly vague as to what practices would exclude a particular country from consideration.
In addition, the bill requires that countries adopt procedures to protect Americans’ information, but provides little specificity as to what these standards must include. Moreover, it would allow countries to wiretap on U.S. soil for the first time, including conversations that foreign targets may have with people in the U.S., without complying with Wiretap Act requirements.
Just imagine if Holder and Hilldawg had this freedom during their reign.