President Biden fundraisers, artificial intelligence meeting on day 2 of Bay Area visit

ByGloria Rodríguez, Zach Fuentes, and Tim Johns, Suzanne Phan KGO logo
Wednesday, June 21, 2023
Biden fundraisers, artificial intelligence meeting on day 2 of visit
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President Biden returns to San Francisco following a reelection campaign fundraiser in Larkspur.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- It has been eventful day for President Joe Biden on day two of his Bay Area visit.

His stint in Bay Area has consisted of addressing investment for new climate projects, artificial intelligence and a pair of fundraising events for his 2024 reelection presidential campaign.

Videos show the president leaving San Francisco's Crissy Field to attend a fundraiser in Larkspur in Marin County before returning to San Francisco Tuesday evening.

VIDEO: Pres. Biden discusses strategy on future of AI on 2nd day of Bay Area trip

President Biden meets with AI experts in San Francisco

Before his Tuesday fundraising events, day two of his Bay Area visit, the future of artificial intelligence was a main item on President Biden's agenda.

He sat down with AI researchers and experts from the Bay Area to talk about the benefits and risks of the technology.

Dr. Arati Prabhakar is the President's Science and Technology Advisor and director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy.

"He's been clear from the beginning that this is one of the most powerful technologies of our time," she said, "That means that if we're going to seize its considerable benefits, we have to start by managing its risks."

Dr. Prabhakar sat next to President Biden in San Francisco Tuesday to meet with the panel of AI researchers and experts that included top minds from Stanford and U.C. Berkeley.

"I want to hear directly from the experts," the president said Tuesday, "And these are some of the world's leading experts on this issue."

Leading experts that Dr. Prabhakar says have diverse viewpoints.

"People who are critics and skeptics of AI, as well as people who are very optimistic and are building applications that they think are going to take us forward into the future," she said.

At the Tuesday meeting, Biden touted work his administration has already done as it relates to AI.

"Last October, we proposed an AI Bill of Rights to ensure that important protections were built into the AI systems from the very start," he said, "Earlier this year, I signed an executive order to direct my cabinet to root out bias in the design and use of AI and in May, we announced a new strategy for funding to respond for responsible AI development."

Tech expert and San Jose State Professor Ahmed Banafa says while there have been positive steps at the federal level, there's still more to be done.

"We need a standard, you know, for AI, we can create our own standards in the United States but what about if this AI is coming from a different country?" Banafa said, "Europe, they have their own standards, China already has their own framework for that. This universal standard, that's what we need."

Work Dr. Prabhakar says is underway.

"We'll be working with Congress on legislation and then with our partners around the world," she said, "Because this is really going to be a global challenge as well."

MORE: Video shows fighter jet intercept plane violating Marin Co. flight restrictions amid Biden's visit

Pres. Biden arrives in Bay Area

President Joe Biden arrived in the Bay Area on Monday afternoon, where he visited a nature preserve in Palo Alto to announce more than $600 million for climate adaptation projects.

Air Force One landed at Moffett Field just after 12 p.m. where the president was greeted by a small group including local and state leaders to start his trip to the Bay Area.

This is the first time President Biden has made his way back to the region after visiting storm-ravaged Capitola and Aptos in January.

RELATED: Pres. Biden, Florida Gov. DeSantis to hold dueling fundraisers this week in Silicon Valley

NASA Ames Research Center Director Eugene Tu, Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors President Susan Ellenberg, San Mateo Congresswoman Anna Eshoo and Governor Gavin Newsom received handshakes and hellos from the president.

National Climate Advisor Ali Zaidi and Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy Dr. Arati Prabhakar traveled with President Biden for this visit focused on climate research funding and West Coast campaigning.

Pres. Biden announces $600M climate initiative during Bay Area visit

President Joe Biden's first stop in the Bay Area this week was a nature preserve, located on the shores of San Francisco Bay where he announced new investments in climate projects.

"What we're seeing here is a success story of how you can work together to make out communities more climate resilient," Biden said.

President Biden toured the coastal wetlands of the Lucy Evans Nature Preserve in Palo Alto, a success story, he says due to ongoing efforts to contain damage from climate change.

RELATED: Pres. Biden to announce over $600 million for climate projects during Bay Area visit

"These wetlands act as a buffer between rising tides and communities at risk to prevent flooding," the president said.

The preserve was a backdrop for the president to announce $600 million in investments to combat the U.S. climate crisis, which includes better protecting the nation's power grid from extreme weather, helping communities prepare for sea level rise and reducing fossil fuel emissions.

"We will cut one-billion tons of carbon emission a year, create millions of good paying jobs," Biden said.

A Biden administration representative said the president then went on to attend two re-election campaign fundraising events in the Bay Area, one hosted by LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman and Microsoft CTO Kevin Scott in Los Gatos and another hosted by California State Controller Steve Westly in Atherton

The Bay City News Service contributed to this article.

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