Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Tuesday he will propose increasing funding for the National Science Foundation by billions to increase research in areas like artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics and the manufacturing of semiconductor chips to make the nation more economically competitive with China.
The bill, Schumer said at his weekly press conference, will “take the key cutting-edge industries and make American investments so we will outcompete China.” He said the bill will be based on the bipartisan Endless Frontiers Act, a measure the Democrat from New York co-sponsored last year with Todd Young, a Republican senator from Indiana.
That bill called for renaming the NSF the National Science and Technology Foundation. The new agency would have two deputy directors — one to oversee the NSF’s current operations and another to lead a new technology directorate to advance technology in 10 areas as the U.S. faces greater competition from China and other countries. Last year’s bill would have increased funding to the agency by $100 billion over five years, but it was not immediately clear if Schumer’s new bill would spend the same amount of money.