Can Any AI Legislation Pass Congress This Session?

by on October 17, 2023 · 0 comments

My latest dispatch from the frontlines of the artificial intelligence policy wars in Washington looks at the major proposals to regulate AI. In my new essay, “Artificial Intelligence Legislative Outlook: Fall 2023 Update,” I argue that there are 3 major impediments to getting major AI legislation over the finish line in Congress: (1) Breadth and complexity of the issue; (2) Multiplicity of concerns & special interests; & (3) Extreme rhetoric / proposals are dominating the discussion.

If Congress wants to get something done in this session, they’ll need to do two things: (1) set aside the most radical regulatory proposals (like big new AI agencies or licensing schemes); and (2) break AI policy down into its smaller subcomponents and then prioritize among them where policy gaps might exist.

Prediction: Congress will not pass any AI-related legislation this session due to the factors identified in my essay. The temptation to “go big” with everything-and-the-kitchen-sink approaches to AI regulation will (especially with extreme ideas like new agencies & licenses) will doom AI legislation. It’s also worth noting that Washington’s swelling interest in AI policy is having a crowding-out effect on other important legislative proposals that might have advanced otherwise, such as the baseline privacy bill (ADPPA) and other things like driverless car legislation. Many want to advance those efforts first, but the AI focus makes that hard.

Read the entire essay here.

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