Bill mandating disclosure for artificial intelligence in political ads headed to House floor

Artificial intelligence and data concept
'We don’t want to be the thought police but we do want to have some guardrails.'

Political ads using artificial intelligence (AI) technology will need a statement disclosing the fact under a bill advancing in the House.

The bill (HB 919) from Rep. Alex Rizo, a Hialeah Republican, was amended to add a criminal penalty. Any candidate or political committee that puts out an ad using AI without disclosing it would commit a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by a prison sentence of one year and a fine of $1,000.

“There are some teeth within this to make sure that we have everyone … must go ahead and comply with these disclaimers,” Rizo said.

The bill passed on an 18-2 vote, with Reps. Ashley Gantt, a Miami Democrat, and Felicia Robinson, a Miami Gardens Democrat, voting against it. They expressed concern with how the investigation process will play out and with the potential for a candidate to be charged with a crime when a third-party vendor who created the ad didn’t tell them AI was used.

Rep. Anna Eskamani, an Orlando Democrat, voted for the bill but said the problem of ads using AI to create false statements or video in attacking opponents was “looming,” and asked whether the state should ban AI in political ads altogether.

“Why not go a step further and say, ‘Hey, you can’t disseminate this’?” Eskamani said. “This opens up a door for more smear campaigns.”

Rizo said such a ban would likely violate the First Amendment.

“What we’re doing here is saying, ‘Hey, there’s a cautionary tale here,’” Rizo said “We don’t want to be the thought police but we do want to have some guardrails.”

The vote means the bill is headed to the House floor. Under the Senate version of the bill (SB 850), violations of the disclosure requirement would be punished by the Florida Election Commission, and wouldn’t be a misdemeanor. It is also headed to the floor in that chamber.

Gray Rohrer


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  • Tom

    February 15, 2024 at 11:03 am

    I’m more worried about abject stupidity than artificial intelligence but you can’t really legislate that away. Oh well. Such is life.

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