Vice President Kamala Harris unveiled an initiative Wednesday featuring several left-wing megadonors that aims to counter “disinformation” and shield “democracy” from artificial intelligence (AI) threats, according to an announcement on Wednesday.
The philanthropies are contributing over $200 million collectively, and include left-wing billionaires George Soros’ Open Society Foundations and Pierre Omidyar’s Omidyar Network and Democracy Fund, according to the project document. The groups are purportedly striving to ensure that policymakers prevent AI from negatively impacting elections and “marginalized” groups.
The left-wing philanthropies “are supporting initiatives to protect U.S. democracy from the potentially destabilizing effects of AI,” the initiative document states. “These efforts include defending free and fair elections while combating disinformation and the undermining of public trust.”
“The philanthropies are also funding projects to develop inclusive, rights-respecting AI governance frameworks and to guard against harmful impacts to historically marginalized communities,” the document adds.
Harris is set to announce the project at a “Global Summit on AI Safety” in the United Kingdom on Wednesday, according to a White House fact sheet detailing the project.
“Projects include efforts to build policymakers’ understanding and use of AI and relevant technology to shape effective and equitable policy,” the document adds.
Soros gave $178,810,550 to Democrats and $0 to Republicans during the 2022 midterm election cycle, according to OpenSecrets. Soros’ son Alex recently took over Open Society Foundations and has extensively contributed to Democrats, according to the Federal Election Commission.
Omidyar contributed $250,000 to NeverTrump PAC in 2016, according to OpenSecrets.
Open Society Foundations gave $10 million in grants to Voter Registration Project (VRP) and Omidyar’s Democracy Fund gave the organization a $500,000 grant. VRP is a group that prevents itself as “nonpartisan” but aimed to help Democrats win elections in 2020, according to a report by watchdog group Capital Research Center exclusively obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
VRP was “commissioned” by now-White House Deputy Chief of Staff John Podesta and it largely targeted demographics likely to vote for Democrats, leading to 5.1 million new voter registrations since 2015, according to its website.
Democracy Fund, Ford Foundation, Open Society Foundations and MacArthur Foundation also are part of a coalition that has pledged more than $500 million to fund and influence local media outlets over the course of five years. MacArthur Foundation is leading that coalition and has pledged $150 million in grants, according to The New York Times.
The White House, Democracy Fund, Open Society Foundations, Ford Foundation and MacArthur Foundation did not immediately respond to the DCNF’s request for comment.
Jason Cohen on November 1, 2023