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Kinzinger Takes to Floor in Support of Anti-Robocall Bill

“This legislation is a big step forward…but we can’t let up”

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Washington, December 5, 2019 | Maura Gillespie (2202253635) | comments
Congressman Adam Kinzinger (IL-16) spoke on the House Floor in support of S. 151, the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence (TRACED) Act.
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Washington, DC – Yesterday, Congressman Adam Kinzinger (IL-16) spoke on the House Floor in support of S. 151, the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence (TRACED) Act. As a co-sponsor of the House version (H.R. 3375) of this anti-robocall legislation, Congressman Kinzinger encouraged his colleagues to vote in support of the measure and stand together on an issue that nearly ALL Americans can agree on—robocalls are super annoying and ‘neighbor spoofing’ continues to create real issues for many.

Following the Congressman’s floor speech, S. 151 was brought before the House for a vote and passed with strong, bipartisan support, securing a 417-3 vote margin.

The Congressman’s floor speech can be found on his YouTube page, and his remarks as written can be found transcribed below:  

“M_. Speaker, as a cosponsor of this anti-Robocall legislation, I rise today in strong support and encourage its swift passage.

“During this time of bitter partisanship, I’m glad to see there is still something that every member of Congress—and indeed, every American—can agree upon: Our disdain for robocalls. 

“By some estimates, nearly 48 BILLION robocalls were made in in the U.S. in 2018—a 57 percent increase over 2017. Even with new countermeasures offered by the private sector, we are on track to meet or surpass those figures again this year. 

“While ALL robocalls are annoying, one of the most troubling trends over the past couple of years is known as “neighbor spoofing,”—we’ve all seen these calls from numbers beginning with our own area codes. And while some of these spoofed numbers are fakes, many actually belong to ordinary Americans, resulting in even more problems.

 “This anti-Robocall bill provides the FCC new authorities to impose substantial fines on violators—up to $20,000 per violation, and possibly higher in some cases. It requires phone companies to verify callers and help block robocalls, all at no extra charge to consumers.  

 “M_. Speaker, make no mistake, this legislation is a big step forward. But given the rapidly changing technology, combined with the fact that many of these calls come from overseas, we can’t let up. More will need to be done.

“Thankfully, this bill requires a number of reports to Congress over the coming months that will allow us to crack down on these perpetrators even harder, regardless of their location.

“I’m proud of the bipartisan, bicameral work that we’ve accomplished on this legislation, and I urge my colleagues to support this bill. And with that, M_. Speaker, I yield back.”  

The House version of the bill, H.R. 3375, can be found here.

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