The Trump administration hit the ground running in its first 41 days in office by pushing for new laws and executive orders intended to roll back Obama-era environmental regulations, harden immigration policies, and withdraw from trade deals. Alarmed at the direction the White House is taking and lingering questions over Russian interference in the election, state and federal legislators are responding with bill proposals of their own. Here are a few.
SB 51 (Jackson) — Whistleblower and Public Data Protection: This bill directs California’s state agencies to preserve scientific information and data from censorship or destruction orders that may come from Washington. SB 51 also gives scientists the ability to speak out without fear of retribution and protects government whistleblowers who report improper or illegal activity.
SB 203 (Jackson) — Digital Citizenship and Media Literacy: Given the recent proliferation of “fake news” — and a general lack of civility that pervades online discourse — this bill creates a pathway to incorporate instruction on digital citizenship, Internet safety, and media literacy in California’s public schools.
AB 1037 (Limón) — Dreamers Work-Study Program: This bill fills financial aid gaps by establishing a state-run, work-study program for California’s AB 540 students who are ineligible for federal grants.
HR 356 (Swalwell, D-CA-15) — Protecting Our Democracy Act: This bill establishes a new commission to examine any attempts by the Russian government or other governments to use electronic means to influence, interfere with, or sow distrust in elections for public office held in the United States in 2016.
HR 804 (Murphy, D-FL-7) — Protect the National Security Council From Political Interference Act of 2017: To insulate the advisory body from undue influence, HR 804 prohibits the president from designating any individual whose primary responsibility is political in nature to serve as a member of the National Security Council.