House of Representatives passes bills to strengthen scientific research, breaking with the Senate

Lawmakers and their aides should try to reconcile the legislation passed by the Senate with the two bills passed Monday, prompting a major debate on Capitol Hill about industrial policy and how to strengthen America’s competitiveness, a goal with broad support. bipartisan.

The two bills were approved 345-67 and 351-68.

“One of the main disagreements or tensions between the House and Senate version is that the Senate version is really focused on China,” said Robert D. Atkinson, president of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation. Ms. Johnson’s bills, she added, prioritize “more social policy issues,” including science, technology, math and engineering education and climate change.

The House bills omit a number of provisions that are core pieces of Senate legislation, including $ 52 billion in emergency grants for semiconductor manufacturers and a host of trade provisions. Instead of creating regional technology centers across the country, as the Senate measure would do, one of the House bills would establish a designated direction for “science and engineering solutions” at the National Science Foundation.

Highlighting several emerging technologies, including artificial intelligence and advanced computing, lawmakers on the House Science Committee have focused primarily on researching and funding a holistic approach to scientific innovation.

“History teaches that problem solving can drive innovation that, in turn, spawns new industries and achieves competitive advantage,” Ms. Johnson wrote.

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