Yet passing it won't be easy, as NERC has powerful friends in Washington. A similar 2010 bill called the "Grid Act" sailed through the House of Representatives before being killed in the Senate by Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska. And though introduced in June 2013, the SHIELD Act has been languishing in the House Energy & Commerce Committee under Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich.
It's well past time for party leaders, on both sides of the aisle, to get involved while there's still time. President Barack Obama should call Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., and tell him to launch a Senate version. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio., should summon Upton and tell him to start protecting the American people.
The government's first responsibility is to protect Americans. As commander in chief, the buck stops with Obama. Though he's been distracted by a scandal a week, he should show some leadership, re-focus his priorities and defend against this potential game changer in American history. Before disaster strikes.
J.D. Gordon is a retired Navy Commander and former Pentagon spokesman who served in the Office of the Secretary of Defense from 2005-2009. He is a Senior Adviser to several think tanks in Washington, DC.