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House launches bipartisan AI task force

​US House of Representatives Speaker Mike Johnson holds a press conference at Capitol Hill in Washington, on Feb. 14, 2024.

US House of Representatives Speaker Mike Johnson holds a press conference at Capitol Hill in Washington, on Feb. 14, 2024.

REUTERS/Leah Millis
US House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) and Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday announced the formation of a bipartisan 24-member task force charged with studying the actions Congress will need to take to both protect consumers and foster innovation.

The task force will not write legislation, but it will produce a report outlining guiding principles and making broad policy recommendations. Two Californian representatives, Democrat Ted Lieu and Republican Jay Obernolte, will lead the committee. Both men are keenly interested in the subject: Obernolte holds a graduate degree in artificial intelligence, and Lieu spearheaded last year’s stalled efforts to regulate the industry.

The cross-party cooperation stands in notable contrast to the dysfunction the House of Representatives has faced in recent months, with top priorities like border security and aid to allies mired in partisan rancor. It also comes just months after Biden’s executive order, which focused on reducing AI-related risks.

We’re watching for whether the findings produce a more viable legislative path, given the apparent enthusiasm from both parties to end Congressional inaction on artificial intelligence.

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