And so it ends, not with a bang but with a whimper. Despite letters from the Director of NSA, General Alexander and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Dempsey the motion to close the debate on the Cybersecurity Act of 2012 failed on a vote of 52-46 (60 aye votes were required). [I may have mis-heard but I think that Senator Reid voted “no” so that he could bring this issue back up later in the term, thus the “nays” were overstated by one vote.]
Next steps? First, there is a slim possibility that the Senate will continue negotiations over the August recess and revisit the issue in September. Second, I expect the Administration to adopt as much of the Act’s requirements as they reasonably can through executive order, much as they have in other areas where Congressional inaction has frustrated them.