California Enters Privacy Law Limbo as November Vote Looms

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Alastair Mactaggart, chairman of Californians for Consumer Privacy, the advocacy group that spearheaded the push for greater protections.

Photo:

Al Drago/Bloomberg News

By

David Uberti

June 30, 2020 5:30 am ET
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WSJ Pro

Californians found themselves in an unusual situation over the past week: preparing to vote on a new privacy law before its predecessor has even been enforced.
The state is slated to begin enforcing its landmark 2018 privacy statute, the California Consumer Privacy Act, on Wednesday. But a successful petition drive by advocates behind this law pushed stronger, European-style protections onto the November ballot last week.
The early months of enforcement of the CCPA—and the coming popular vote on the new California Privacy Rights Act—could preview stricter consumer protections nationwide, privacy experts say, as federal legislation remains stalled in Congress. But even some supporters of the new ballot initiative acknowledge that voters might be hard-pressed to keep up with all the moving parts.
“Very little about the initiative system gives people enough information to vote,” said state Sen. Bill Dodd, a Democrat who co-sponsored CCPA. “Unfortunately, it’s a necessity, sometimes, to getting business done in the state of California.”

The CCPA, which was passed by state lawmakers in …

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