Rep. Eshoo Applauds Inclusion of AI, Cyber, Semiconductor Provisions of House-Passed NDAA

July 23, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rep. Anna G. Eshoo (D-CA) released the following statement after the House passed H.R. 6395, the William M. (Mac) Thornberry National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 (NDAA):

“I’m pleased that the House-passed NDAA includes several strong and smart provisions to strengthen America’s leadership in artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, and semiconductor manufacturing. I’m especially pleased the NDAA includes my bipartisan and bicameral legislation, the National AI Research Resource Task Force Act, which establishes a task force to develop a roadmap for a national research cloud to promote AI research,” said Rep. Eshoo. “The NDAA also includes two amendments I authored to enhance reporting of the Pentagon’s AI efforts, an amendment I cosponsored to create the National Cyber Director role in the White House, and an amendment I cosponsored to bolster our country’s semiconductor manufacturing capabilities.”

AI, Cybersecurity, Semiconductor Provisions Rep. Eshoo Sponsored or Cosponsored

H.R. 7096, the National AI Research Resource Task Force Act, was introduced in the House by Reps. Anna G. Eshoo (D-CA), Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH), and Mikie Sherrill (D-NJ) and in the Senate by Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Martin Heinrich (D-NM). The legislation will convene a group of technical experts across academia, government, and industry to develop a detailed plan for how the U.S. can build, deploy, govern, and sustain a national AI research cloud, which makes available high power computing, pools large data sets, and shares educational resources with researchers.

H.R. 7096 appears as section 5107 of the NDAA.

The National AI Research Resource Task Force Act is supported by Chairman Eric Schmidt and Vice Chairman Bob Work of the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence, Stanford University, the Ohio State University, Princeton University, UCLA, Carnegie Mellon University, Duke University, Pennsylvania State University, University of Pennsylvania, Johns Hopkins University, University of Washington, Yale University, University of Florida, Allen Institute for AI, OpenAI, Mozilla, IEEE-USA, Google, Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, Oracle, IBM, NVIDIA, Orbital Insight, Calypso AI, and Scale AI.

In addition to H.R. 7096, the House adopted two AI-related amendments offered by Rep. Eshoo. Amendment #131 requires the Joint Artificial Intelligence Center (JAIC) of the DOD to report on its contribution to the development of AI standards in multi-stakeholder bodies. Amendment #132 requires the JAIC to report on the assignments servicemembers receive after they complete their duty with the JAIC.

Rep. Eshoo also cosponsored two amendments by the House. Rep. Matsui’s Amendment #24, based on her bipartisan legislation with Rep. McCaul, the CHIPS for America Act, which will restore American leadership in semiconductor manufacturing. Rep. Langevin’s Amendment #15 creates the role of the National Cyber Director within the Executive Office of the President, based on bipartisan legislation, the National Cyber Director Act. Finally, Rep. Eshoo cosponsored H.R. 6216, the National Artificial Intelligence Initiative Act, comprehensive and bipartisan legislation that establishes an initiative to accelerate and coordinate investments and partnerships in AI research, standards, and education. H.R. 6216 appears as division E of the NDAA.

Background on the NDAA

H.R. 6395, the William M. (Mac) Thornberry National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 also contains important provisions to support servicemembers and make the military more inclusive.

The legislation gives a much-deserved three percent pay raise to our men and women in uniform and establishes standards to improve the quality of military housing.

As our nation experiences a long overdue reckoning on racial injustice, this legislation ensures that the military is welcoming to all Americans by removing Confederate names from bases, setting goals for increasing representation of women and minorities, and establishing a Chief Diversity Officer for each service branch.

The bill also restricts the use of military funds to build a border wall, prohibits U.S. support for Saudi war crimes in Yemen, and establishes a pandemic preparedness fund. These provisions improve military readiness and ensure that our Armed Services reflect the values of inclusion, diversity, and human rights.