Crowell attorneys attended the Attorney General Alliance (AGA) Annual Meeting in Colorado Springs, Colorado from June 12 to June 15. As usual, the conference included receptions and other networking events allowing the Crowell attorneys in attendance to engage with the over twenty attorneys general (AGs), from both political parties, as well as a host of their respective staff.

The conference included sessions focused on, among other topics, the Artificial Intelligence (AI) economy, the ethical use of AI, mental health, antitrust, Supreme Court litigation, state and federal cooperation, consumer protection and education, federal preemption, and emerging technologies. Conference speakers included: Jon Palmer, Microsoft General Counsel; Rajit Kapur, Instacart IP Counsel; Vanessa Broadhurst, Johnson & Johnson Executive Vice President of Global Corporate Affairs; the Honorable Mark Bennett, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit; Stacey Friedman, JPMorgan Chase & Co. Executive Vice President and General Counsel; Maryana Zubok, Pfizer, Inc., Vice President & Chief Counsel; Harold Kim, U.S. Chamber Executive Vice President; Sue Boyett, local United Way Executive Director; and David Zapolsky, Amazon Senior Vice President for Global Public Policy & General Counsel.

Below please find some key takeaways from the conference:

  • The conference’s major themes were on the importance of partnerships, shared values, and balance. To that end, the conference provided for respectful bipartisan discourse among AGs in light of the increasing partisan nature of the work that AGs participate in across the country.
  • The panel on the AI economy discussed opportunities and challenges presented by AI and the importance of public-private partnerships to manage emerging AI. The panel encouraged the development of industry-wide coalition building to effectively leverage the benefits of AI. According to executives from Microsoft, the United States and China are the two primary countries building the AI economy. The United States ability to leverage the technology across a host of industries will be key to secure positive outcomes for the United States’ business community and consumers. However, given such rapid development, companies should maintain key AI principles, such as access, fairness, and responsibility, especially while the industry is largely unregulated.
  • The panel on ethical AI focused on the fast rate of change in the industry. The technology will likely continue to change and develop much faster than the law, where legal standards will be hard to define and will need to be tailored to not limit innovation. The panel generally encouraged the development of state laws and regulations to protect consumers.
  • The panel on state and federal cooperation discussed the invaluable nature of state partnerships based on the federal government’s lack of resources and ability to manage any and all issues. In large multistate matters, state enforcers often lead the litigation efforts. Further, states can assist with federal investigations because AG offices are more proximate to the concerns of consumers. The panel discussed recent antitrust filings that have benefited from federal-state partnerships, such as the Kroger-Albertsons merger and NCAA transfer restrictions.
  • The panel on preemption discussed the ongoing debate between express and implied federal preemption and how preemption affects the priorities and targets of AG investigations.

Crowell continues to attend various State AG-based conferences to remain abreast of the top priorities of state enforcers. Crowell reports on those conferences, as well as through weekly attorney general updates, on this blog.