Reports: Democrats Want Cybersecurity Adviser in White House

Two Democratic lawmakers Tuesday introduced a bill to save the top cybersecurity role at the White House after the Trump administration announced it would eliminate the position, The Hill reported.

Reps. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., and Jim Langevin, D-R.I., said the legislation would establish a cyber advisory position within the Executive Office of the President.

The move comes after a National Security Council decided to terminate the job of cybersecurity coordinator, which was first reported by Politico.

“The National Security Council’s cyber office already has two very capable senior directors,” a spokesman for the NSC, Robert Palladino, said in a statement, The Hill reported. “Moving forward, these senior directors will coordinate cyber matters and policy. As they sit six feet apart from one another, they will be able to coordinate in real time.”

“Streamlining management will improve efficiency, reduce bureaucracy, and increase accountability,” he added.

But Lieu called the decision “outrageous, especially given that we’re facing more hostile threats from foreign adversaries than ever before,” The Hill reported.

“This move impedes our country’s strategic efforts to counter cybersecurity threats against our country,” he said. “Fortunately, our bill will fill in those holes in government cybersecurity oversight by creating a National Office for Cyberspace in the White House.”

“It is an enormous step backward to de-emphasize the importance of this growing domain within the White House,” Langevin added in a statement, The Hill reported.

The cyber coordinator position was established under the Obama administration, and was last held by Rob Joyce, a former National Security Agency official with expertise in cybersecurity. Joyce disclosed last month he was returning to the NSA, The Hill reported.

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