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Schumer: Legislation Is the ‘Only Real Answer’ to Regulate AI

President Joe Biden is preparing an executive order dealing with artificial intelligence (AI).

The Senate’s top Democrat, however, reportedly believes action on AI needs to come from Congress, not the White House.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer on Thursday (Oct. 26) said the president’s executive order won’t be enough to properly deal with AI, the Washington Post reported.

“There’s probably a limit to what you can do by executive order,” Schumer said at an event hosted by the newspaper, adding that Congress has passed proposals to deal with AI that have gone unfunded.

“They are concerned, and they’re doing a lot regulatorily, but everyone admits the only real answer is legislative.”

According to the report, the New York Democrat stressed the need for federal investment — to the tune of up to $32 billion — in AI safeguards.

“If the government doesn’t do it, no one will,” Schumer said.

The Post had previously reported Biden’s executive order, set to be released Oct. 30 in advance of a global AI summit. The order will require assessments for advanced AI models before they can be used by federal workers.

“By doing so, it will leverage the U.S. government’s position as a major technology customer to mitigate potential risks associated with the use of AI,” PYMNTS wrote.

In addition, the order will require federal government agencies, including the Defense Department, Energy Department and intelligence agencies, to consider incorporating AI into their work, with a particular emphasis on beefing up national cyber defenses.

This week also saw the release of a report showing that the U.S. leads all other countries in terms of the innovation, investment and implementation of disruptive AI products and research.

Venture capital firm Air Street Capital’s “State of AI Report 2023” found that more than 70% of the AI papers cited most since 2020 had been authored by researchers from institutions and organizations in the U.S.

In addition, Big Tech giants Google and Meta held the largest percentage of cited AI research papers, while China’s only entrant on the list, Beijing’s Tsinghua University, didn’t crack the top 10. And AI companies based in the U.S. were also the recipients of 70% of global private funding in 2023, compared to 55% in 2022.