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Reps Lieu, Buck, Eshoo and Sen Schatz Introduce Bipartisan, Bicameral Bill to Create a National Commission on Artificial Intelligence

WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Ted W. Lieu (D-Los Angeles County), Congressman Ken Buck (R-CO), and Congresswoman Anna Eshoo (D-CA) introduced the National AI Commission Act, bipartisan and bicameral legislation to create a national commission to focus on the question of regulating Artificial Intelligence (AI). The bipartisan, blue-ribbon commission will review the United States’ current approach to AI regulation, make recommendations on any new office or governmental structure that may be necessary, and develop a risk-based framework for AI. The group will be comprised of experts from civil society, government, industry and labor, and those with technical expertise coming together to develop a comprehensive framework for AI regulation. Senator Brian Schatz (D-HI) will be introducing companion legislation in the Senate.

Artificial Intelligence is doing amazing things for our society. It can also cause significant harm if left unchecked and unregulated. Congress must not stay on the sidelines,” said Representative Lieu.“However, we must also be humble and acknowledge that there is much we as Members of Congress don’t know about AI. That’s why our bill, the National AI Commission Act, brings together experts in civil society, government, industry, labor and more to make recommendations on the best ways to move forward on AI regulation. Our bill forges a path toward responsible AI regulation that promotes technological progress while keeping Americans safe. Transparency is critical when legislating on something as complicated as AI, and this bipartisan, blue ribbon commission will provide policymakers and the American public with the basis and reasoning for the recommendations and what information was relied upon. Thank you to Representatives Buck, Eshoo and Senator Schatz for co-leading this legislation.

Artificial Intelligence holds tremendous opportunity for individuals and our economy,” said Representative Buck. “It’s also possible that AI poses a great risk for our national security. I’m proud to lead this bipartisan piece of legislation with Rep. Lieu to ensure that Congress considers expert opinions before the government takes action in this emerging field."

AI technology holds lots of potential, but it comes with real risks,” said Senator Schatz. “We need a better understanding of how we can take advantage of these new technologies and do so in a responsible way.

As Co-Chair of the bipartisan Congressional Artificial Intelligence Caucus, I understand how complex the issue of artificial intelligence is. The National AI Commission Act is an important first step to bring together stakeholders and experts to better understand how we can regulate AI and what guardrails must be in place as AI become more prevalent across society,” said Representative Eshoo.

Read the full text of the bill here.

Read a one-pager on the bill here.

The National AI Commission Act has the support of:

Merve Hickok, President, Center for AI and Digital Policy

"The Center for AI and Digital Policy supports the National AI Commission Act. We believe this is a timely proposal that will create the necessary guardrails for AI and ensure public participation in the development of the nation’s AI strategy. We have warned that the United States is not prepared to meet the AI challenges ahead. A National AI Commission would be a step in the right direction. We commend Rep. Lieu and Rep. Buck for this initiative. We urge Congress to act promptly on the National AI Commission Act.”

Gary Marcus, Professor Emeritus, New York University, and co-author of Rebooting AI

“Artificial Intelligence is likely to have dramatic effects, both positive and negative, throughout society; it is urgent that the United States develop an AI strategy that allows its citizens to thrive. The bipartisan National AI Commission Act represents a much needed recognition of that urgency, with a focus on developing thoughtful coordinated response throughout the US government, including examining possibilities such as a potential creating new agency to accommodate the breadths of both the challenges and opportunities AI presents. Especially critical is the independence it seeks--through incorporating representatives from science, ethics and civil society–-vital for threading the needle between no regulation and regulation that would excessively favor incumbents while stifling innovation.”

Dr. Divyansh Kaushik, Associate Director of Emerging Technologies and National Security, Federation of American Scientists

"There is no denying that Congress needs to act on AI governance today to maximize the benefits and minimize the downsides of AI and it must act urgently. At the same time, the National AI Commission, to be established by the National AI Commission Act, could start thinking of developing long-term strategies that could shape AI governance for the next decade. By including perspectives from industry, academia, government, and civil society, this initiative will ensure that the United States remains at the forefront of AI innovation while aligning with democratic values."

Lisa Gilbert, Executive Vice President, Public Citizen

“Public Citizen welcomes this important effort from Representatives Lieu and Buck and Senator Schatz. As the nation grapples with the potential harms of AI to democracy, consumers, the financial markets, workers and more, the need for a comprehensive whole of government approach is obvious. This common sense legislation to create a bipartisan commission to make recommendations on AI regulation and a potential new agency just makes sense. We applaud the leadership that these members are showing as we all come to grips with the looming threats of AI.”

Miriam Vogel, President and CEO, EqualAI

"We applaud the bipartisan efforts of Representatives Ted Lieu and Ken Buck and their commitment to taking action to ensure our AI systems are as inclusive and safe as they are effective. We particularly appreciate their awareness of the numerous perspectives that must be included in the building and regulation of AI systems, meaning, not only those known critical actors with computer science and technical backgrounds in AI; but also those with a focus and commitment to civil society, civil liberties, ethics, and the creative community; industry and workforce; and government, including national security.”

Susan Gonzales, Founder of AIandYou.org

“AI significantly impacts the daily lives of students, workers, and the elderly who need protective guardrails as the technology continues to evolve. The work of this Commission will accelerate the guardrails needed to avoid negative outcomes while allowing the promise of AI to be fulfilled."

Landon Klein, Director of US Policy, Future of Life Institute

“The risks posed by increasingly-powerful AI systems, if not urgently addressed, are comparable in magnitude to those posed by nuclear weapons and pandemics. Establishing a centralized authority to oversee advanced AI systems is a critical step in ensuring that any development and deployment of this technology is measured, responsible, equitable, safe, and in the public interest. We are pleased to see Rep. Lieu taking a thoughtful approach toward how to best accomplish these goals, and hope Rep. Lieu's efforts, and those of Congress more generally, are successful in steering this technology toward a safe, secure, and prosperous future.”

Information Technology Industry Council President and CEO Jason Oxman

“Policymakers are taking the crucial first step of fully understanding AI technology before considering how it might be regulated, and Congressman Ted Lieu’s National AI Commission Act will help lawmakers and regulators get a better grasp on the AI landscape. This bipartisan bill can advance U.S. innovation and competitiveness while bringing the tech industry to the table to examine how the U.S. can harness AI’s transformative potential. ITI looks forward to engaging with Congressman Lieu as this legislation advances.”

Michael Karanicolas, Executive Director, UCLA Institute for Technology, Law & Policy

“Artificial intelligence is a transformational technology, with tremendous potential benefits, but also serious risks. It is vitally important that our government move expeditiously to head off these challenges and safeguard the rights of those on the sharp edge of technological change. While the real test will come with the Commission's findings, I very much welcome the “National AI Commission Act” as an important step towards leveraging cross-sectoral expertise to craft an appropriate regulatory and oversight structure which fosters innovation while imposing binding legal and ethical guardrails on the development and use of these technologies.”

Melanie Mitchell, Professor at the Sante Fe Institute and author of Artificial Intelligence: A Guide for Thinking Humans

“I strongly support the proposal for the National AI Commission Act. The proposed commission would enable important and urgent outcomes: informed and actionable risk assessments as well as recommendations for AI regulation that would ensure the alignment of AI and its applications with democratic values.”