February 29, 2024

The Republican National Committee released a political ad that used AI-generated imagery to depict fictional scenarios such as a Chinese attack on Taiwan and martial law in San Francisco under President Joe Biden’s watch. Following criticism, a New York Democrat introduced legislation to require disclosure of AI-produced content in political ads. AI-generated political content is becoming increasingly prevalent, with politicians using AI for campaign materials and to hasten critical tasks. While AI has the potential to improve political communications and make campaigns cheaper, it also poses risks, such as increasing the dissemination of misinformation and creating deepfakes. Despite these risks, Washington is struggling to keep up with rapidly advancing AI technology and create effective regulations. The U.S. is lagging behind other countries in regulating AI, while companies in Europe and China are already working on measures to label content and images generated by AI. AI is anticipated to make U.S. political campaigns cheaper and the technology is already being used to create ads, write speeches, and draft legislation. Even though there are indications that lawmakers are taking the threat of AI more seriously than previous technological advancements, Washington has a history of struggling to regulate emerging technology.

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