U.S. Senators Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), John McCain (R-AZ), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Jon Kyl (R-AZ), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Dan Coats (R-IN), Ron Johnson (R-WI), and Richard Burr (R-NC) today issued the following statement on cybersecurity legislation:
"We are disappointed that the Senate has so far this year failed to follow the example of the House of Representatives and pass bipartisan cybersecurity legislation. Before we adjourned for the August recess, several Republican and Democratic Senators had an understanding on how to best move forward on cybersecurity, and a shared commitment to working through the recess toward compromise legislation that could pass with bipartisan support. This agreement was important because throughout the consideration of this bill, the Majority Leader circumvented the legislative process and refused to allow any amendments to be voted on in committee or on the floor of the Senate. Unfortunately, rather than allowing the process to move forward and amendments to be considered, the Majority Leader and the White House shut down debate, forced a vote they knew would lose and blamed Republicans for the failure.
"We find it bizarre that some Democrats continue to charge Republicans with somehow shirking our responsibilities on national security, when the Majority Leader has so far this year refused, for the first time in over 50 years, to bring up for Senate consideration the most important piece of national security legislation, the FY 2013 National Defense Authorization Act.
"When it returns next month, the Senate should address cybersecurity, but not in the "take it or leave it' manner the Majority Leader pursued. Instead, it should be done in a manner that ensures our security, utilizes the most innovative aspects of the private sector and the government, and does not harm our economy. This critical effort should not fall victim to partisan politics in an election year. As always, we stand ready to work with our colleagues to find common ground on this important issue."