In an annual report released on Tuesday, Chief Justice John Roberts warned of the potential dangers of using artificial intelligence (AI) ahead of the contentious 2020 election season.
The report was highly critical of AI’s current use in politics, particularly citing the dangers of using AI-driven algorithms to identify potential voters. Roberts argued that AI-based techniques could lead to the suppression of certain voting groups and could ultimately deny some people their right to vote.
The chief justice also suggested that the Supreme Court should closely monitor the use of AI in upcoming election campaigns and consider whether further regulations are necessary. In addition, Roberts encouraged the U.S. government to provide clearer funding guidelines and protections for data privacy concerning AI-driven campaigns.
The annual report comes at a pivotal moment in American history, just months before a hotly contested election year. The court’s assessment of AI and its potential implications to the 2020 electoral process could have a major ripple effect on how both political parties strategize their campaigns.
Widespread use of AI and other technology-driven techniques is likely to continue as the 2020 election approaches, so it is essential that appropriate safeguards are in place to protect citizens’ voting rights and data privacy. The Supreme Court’s recommendations will be instrumental to the development of responsible AI usage during this crucial period.