Also, don't lawmakers ever consult a real technical person when it comes to stuff like this?
What? No. You're getting this backwards. Lawmakers don't seek out people informed with opinions. People with opinions (and agendas) lobby lawmakers to get their views legislated.
This is the result of profit-driven enterprise gaining access to political power, and nothing else.
Heard that the next Space Shuttle is supposed to carry several Guernsey cows? It's gonna be the herd shot 'round the world.