WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are worried about the possibilities raised by rapidly evolving AI technology. Some Senators say it is necessary to set up rules and safeguards before it gets out of hand.
Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) put the capabilities of artificial intelligence on full display, using the technology to emulate his voice and write a speech about AI.
“That voice was not mine. The words were not mine…We’re on the verge of a new era,” Blumenthal said.
Open AI CEO, Sam Altman, told lawmakers the quickly evolving tech comes with real risks.
“My worst fears are that we cause significant- we, the field of the technology industry, cause significant harm to the world,” Altman said.
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) is concerned about how ai programs could be used to manipulate voters.
“Should we be worried about this for our elections,” Hawley asked.
“We’re gonna face an election next year and these models are getting better. I think this is a significant area of concern,” Altman said.
Altman called on lawmakers to take steps now to protect Americans from misuse and abuse of the technology.
“A combination of companies doing the right thing, regulation, and public education,” Altman said.
Many lawmakers and experts say it may be time to form a new agency to help govern AI and hold companies accountable.
“We really don’t have much of a defense against the bad stuff and the bad stuff will come,” Sen Peter Welch (D-VT.) said.
“Agency or no agency, we need to hold companies responsible,” Christina Mongtomery, IBM VP and Chief Privacy and Trust Officer said.
These lawmakers and experts also agree it will be better for the U.S. to take the lead on regulations, rather than rely on international discussions.