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House forms new task force to tackle AI

The U.S. House of Representatives announced the creation of a new task force focused on artificial intelligence on Tuesday, as Congress continues to explore whether and how to regulate the emerging technology while maintaining the nation’s competitive edge in technological innovation.

Twenty-four House lawmakers — a dozen each of Democrats and Republicans — will work within the Task Force on Artificial Intelligence to produce a report complete with guiding principles, recommendations for the future of the industry and bipartisan policy proposals. 

The Task Force will be chaired by Rep. Jay Obernolte, R-Calif., and Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif. will serve as co-chair. 

“Because advancements in artificial intelligence have the potential to rapidly transform our economy and our society, it is important for Congress to work in a bipartisan manner to understand and plan for both the promises and the complexities of this transformative technology,” said House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., in a statement.

Each of the members of the new task force brings some level of AI expertise to the group. Multiple House committees are represented, including the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology; the Committee on Ways and Means; the House Judiciary Committee; and the Appropriations Committee. 

Fresh federal guidance on AI could help move pending legislation forward as well. Congress has seen a flurry of bills related to AI proposed since 2023. The American Action Forum’s AI Bill tracker documents 78 individual pieces of legislation proposed on AI-related topics, many of which will be addressed by the task force. 

“The question is how to ensure AI benefits society instead of harming us,” Lieu said. “As a recovering Computer Science major, I know this will not be an easy or quick or one-time task, but I believe Congress has an essential role to play in the future of AI. I have been heartened to see so many members of Congress of all political persuasions agree.”

source: NextGov