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Ernst, Cortez Masto Introduce Bill to Prepare U.S. for Advances in Artificial Intelligence Technology

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA), Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Emerging Threats and Capabilities Subcommittee, and Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, today introduced bipartisan legislation to spur much needed attention to maintaining America’s competitiveness in artificial intelligence (AI), in support of U.S. national security and economic interests, as well as to maintain a competitive advantage over other nations in the use of this cutting-edge technology.

This bill establishes the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence to provide necessary recommendations to the President and Congress concerning AI, machine learning, and associated technologies. Specifically, the Commission will be tasked with completing a yearly report that will consider competitiveness of the U.S. in AI in the realms of national security, economic security, public-private partnerships, and investment. Additionally, the report will explore the means for maintaining a technological advantage, developments in foreign investments in AI, how to recruit leading talent in AI and STEM fields, and the risks associated with U.S., foreign countries, and non-state actors’ advances in the military employment of AI.

“Our nation has made extraordinary advancements in technology in the 21st century, and we must ensure the United States is prepared to take advantage of the next major technological boon: artificial intelligence,” said Senator Ernst. “Through the establishment of the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence we will better understand how to best utilize AI, from the front-lines to the factory lines. The Commission will also provide necessary insight into how near-peer competitors around the globe, like Russia and China, are also advancing in the AI field and what we must do to remain competitive in the realms of national and economic security.”

“Artificial Intelligence has the potential to profoundly change many aspects of our lives,” said Senator Cortez Masto. “As AI grows into an important tool for our national security, and a driver of economic growth, comprehensive public awareness and oversight is increasingly important. The commission proposed in this bill will provide guidance on how we cultivate AI to help ensure we stay ahead of countries like China in this space, while also building guardrails to make certain the U.S. government responsibly uses AI.”

The National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence will be comprised of 15 members appointed by Congress and executive branch leaders from the fields of defense, commerce, science, and intelligence.

Read the full text of the bill here.