Rep. Dean Phillips, D-Minn., pledged to be the “first AI president” in a campaign speech in New Hampshire on Thursday.
Phillips was campaigning alongside former 2020 presidential candidate Andrew Yang ahead of the Granite State’s first-in-the-nation primary on Jan. 23.
The moderate Minnesotan is a long shot to lead the Democratic presidential ticket, but his choice to emphasize artificial intelligence (AI) is a way to further separate himself from President Biden, his 81-year-old opponent.
“Men in their 80s, frankly, even good men and women, are not in a position to anticipate and prepare us for the future,” Phillips said, taking an indirect shot at Biden.
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Rep. Dean Phillips is seen outside the House Democratic Caucus leadership election in Longworth Building on Nov. 30, 2022. (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)
“We had 100 years to prepare for climate change. We knew 100 years ago what would happen by burning fossil fuels, and what did we do? Nothing.”
He continued, “AI, my friends, we don’t have 100 years. We have months, if not just a couple of years at the most. I anticipated and am prepared for it, and I will be our first AI president.”
The long-shot candidate pledged to put together an AI “task force” to study its applications and outcomes.
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President Biden signed an executive order establishing AI guardrails. (Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
Phillips said AI would make the federal government “more effective and efficient” and would “generate health outcomes that will transcend anything we could dream about right now.”
Citing its risks, however, he added, “It’s going to disenfranchise this economy, it’s going to be disruptive in ways that we can actually anticipate.”
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“I’m going to put together a task force of the best and brightest to anticipate what’s coming and make recommendations, as we do here, to employ better practices, to put guardrails on the nefarious use of AI. But most importantly, let’s talk about the blessings of AI,” Phillips said.
President Biden has met with tech giants like OpenAI CEO Sam Altman. (Senate Judiciary )
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Biden signed an executive order in late October establishing guardrails for AI development and use, including requiring developers of the rapidly-emerging tech to share safety test results and other details with the U.S. government.
He’s also held meetings with the heads of Microsoft, OpenAI and other tech giants to discuss responsible AI development.