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Washington Internet Daily

If Congress passes the Email Privacy Act and sends it to President Donald Trump, it could be an "quick, easy bipartisan victory" for taxpayers and get the new administration and lawmakers off to a "positive" start, said Institute for Policy Innovation President Tom Giovanetti in an opinion piece in TechCrunch Wednesday.

HR-387, which the House unanimously passed again in February, would close a loophole by requiring law enforcement to get a warrant to access a person's emails older than 180 days stored in a third-party server (see 1702070011). It would update the 30-year-old Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA), which currently permits such access. Last year, the bill stalled in a Senate committee.

"The major agenda items promised, like tax reform and healthcare overhaul, are bigger lifts and will take months to get done," said Giovanetti, but "Mr. Trump's emphasis on making deals may also indicate a bias toward including Democrats in the process -- getting buy-in from both sides rather than relying on single-party support for his agenda." Updating ECPA could be a "helpful opening" to form new bipartisan coalitions on critical legislation, he said.