Zinn Paulness was a Senator in the Galactic Senate during the Clone Wars. He was one of the Senators taking hostage by Cad Bane and his team of bounty hunters while he was discussing an Enhanced Privacy Invasion Bill with some other Senators. The purpose of the kidnap was so that Cad Bane could force Supreme Chancellor Palpatine to allow the release of Ziro the Hutt. Bane went back on his word, and tried to kill the Senators anyway (including Paulness) with with bombs he had set, but he and the other Senators were narrowly saved by Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker.
Paulness also participated in the votes in the Senate involving deregulating the banks to create more clone troopers, whether to accept the peace offering from the Confederacy of Independent Systems, and the bill proposed by Senator Halle Burtoni to create 5,000,000 more clone troopers. He voted in support of the bill to deregulate the banks after the power failure in the building caused by the Separatists, and even questioned why they were postponing the vote. After Senator Padmé Amidala's speech during the debate on Burtoni's bill, he and many of his political allies applauded.