Photo: Eva Hambach/AFP via Getty Images

A Senate Commerce subcommittee has teed up a hearing next week on Silicon Valley's prized liability shield, slated to take place the day after Big Tech CEOs face a grilling from a House panel.

Why it matters: Lawmakers on other congressional panels, including the Senate Judiciary Committee, are already eyeing legislation to chip away at Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. Attention from multiple committees raises the odds that such a law could pass before the year's end.

Driving the news: The hearing, set for July 28, will center on the PACT Act from Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), leaders of the Senate Commerce communications, technology, innovation and the internet subcommittee, which will hold the session.

  • The PACT Act would, among other things, update Section 230 by requiring tech platforms to be more transparent about the decisions that go into their moderation practices.
  • Planned witnesses include Jeff Kosseff, a cybersecurity professor at the Naval Academy who wrote a book on Section 230, and Elizabeth Banker, deputy general counsel for tech trade group the Internet Association, the panel said.

Flashback: Only one Section 230 bill has made it through Congress: the anti-sex trafficking package known as FOSTA-SESTA that was signed into law in 2018.

Yes, but: Section 230 is under more scrutiny than ever, with voices on both the right and left calling for changes and the Trump administration raising the threat of repeal when technology companies remove content in a way it doesn't like.

Go deeper

DC's assault on tech will crest at CEO hearing

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Lawmakers' Monday grilling of the CEOs of Facebook, Apple, Amazon and Google will culminate a years-in-the-making transformation in the relationship between Washington and Silicon Valley from cooperation to confrontation.

The big picture: The proceedings will focus on questions of monopolistic behavior, but the event will be fueled by a longer list of beefs from both parties about misinformation, censorship, consumer privacy, China and more.

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Axios-Ipsos poll: Fear of voting

Data: Axios/Ipsos poll; Note: ±3.0% margin of error for the total sample; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Democrats are twice as likely as Republicans to worry about in-person voting — with nearly two in three seeing it as a large or moderate risk to their health — according to this week's installment of the Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index.

Why it matters: This could pose a significant disadvantage for Joe Biden and other Democratic candidates in November if the pattern holds — especially in states where high infection rates persist, or where there are significant hurdles to mail-in, absentee or early voting.

Trump: Coronavirus is "under control"

President Trump said in an interview with “Axios on HBO” that he thinks the coronavirus is as well-controlled in the U.S. as it can be, despite dramatic surges in new infections over the course of the summer and more than 150,000 American deaths.

  • “They are dying, that's true. And you have — it is what it is. But that doesn't mean we aren't doing everything we can. It's under control as much as you can control it. This is a horrible plague,” he told Axios' Jonathan Swan.