Robot Shift: Congress Ponders Day When Machines Replace Workers

By Chris Opfer June 3 — The robots are coming, and at least some lawmakers in Congress expect them to make a lot of jobs obsolete when they get here. “There are assembly lines where you already look out on a field of robots that can work 24-7, they don’t need health insurance, they don’t take vacations and they don’t get sick,” Sen. Dan Coats (R-Ind.) told Bloomberg BNA. “I think it’s coming faster than anybody realizes,” he said of the shift to machine workers. Coats and other lawmakers are starting to think about “technological unemployment,” or the replacement of workers with self-checkout aisles, driverless vehicles, medical robots and other automations. They have different ideas about how to prepare for the coming workforce overhaul, but most agree that it’s going…


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