PolitiHacks Digest: Week of 4 March

“We really want the [startup] visa done. But we can still join in coalition with labor, with immigrants rights groups, with others. If we link arms, we’ll have a better chance of getting this done.”
Emily Lam, Silicon Valley Leadership Group on Mercury News

What You Need to Know:


  1. First hearing to specifically focus on immigrant entrepreneurs in House on Tuesday; Canaan Partners’ Deepak Kamra to testify on behalf of startup community
  2. Fight over cybersecurity bill (CISPA) is picking up for March. Keep an eye on EFF if you’re interested in the latest on the issue.

What’s Going On in DC: 


Republican hackers launch organization, plot to bring data to GOP

Led by SendHub founder (YC W12) Garrett Johnson and growth hacker Aaron Ginn, this group is working with campaigns to route devs and designers to solve technical problems for campaigns, while running interference against management red tape.

What exactly are Garrett and Aaron planning


PolitiHacks Update: Founders engaging Politicos in Boulder, Chicago

Inspired by the exchange between Vivek Wadhwa and Rep. Luis Gutierrez on TC, PolitiHacks is setting up opportunities for founders to continue the discussion.

In Boulder, Tim Enwall from Mobiplug had his Letter to the Editor published, while in Chicago, a group of founders is scheduling a follow-up meeting with Rep. Gutierrez’ staff.

Why these tools work as engagement


Patents: How do we protect startups from trolls?

Reps. Pete DeFazio and Jason Chaffetz announced, with the support of EFF, the introduction of a bill to push trial costs onto patent trolls.

How might this play out in practice


Cybersecurity: Should you be able to trust a company’s privacy agreement?

Privacy concerns with the cybersecurity bill, CISPA, are based on the legislation allowing companies to violate their privacy agreements with users upon request from a federal agency and do so protected from fines from the FTC, which normally prevents such behavior.


Cybersecurity: What is the Senate prioritizing on this issue?

The Senate will discuss the President’s executive order through a Thursday hearing that will also define its own priorities when writing a Senate bill, as private negotiations continue.


i2Coalition, Engine Advocacy talk Internet, startups to DC

This week, the i2Coalition and Engine Advocacy were both on Capitol Hill. Their goal was to promote discussion between tech and DC to explain the problems we face and how DC should approach solving them.

How do these delegations to DC work

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