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Tags: tiktok | social media | ccp | china | bytedance

TikTok Sale-or-Shutdown Push Regains Momentum

By    |   Sunday, 10 March 2024 11:49 AM EDT

The push to ban TikTok stalled during former President Donald Trump's administration, but it is regaining momentum with a "narrowly tailored" bill that would require it to decouple from China or face being shut down in the U.S.

"I've had discussions with a lot of the [senators], and we welcome that and hope they could act swiftly," the bill's co-author Rep. Mike Gallagher, R-Wis., chair of the House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party, told the The Wall Street Journal.

The bill calls for CCP-tied ByteDance to divest of TikTok in the U.S. within six months or face being banned from U.S. app stores and web-hosting due to forced technology transfer to China's government.

Former CEO of Activision Bobby Kotick is working on getting prospective funding together to buy the popular social media app to keep it going for the 70 million Americans on the platform. The cost could be in the hundreds of billions, according to the Journal.

There is some past opposition to forcing a sale in lieu of a ban in the Senate, mostly on the grounds of the First Amendment and the defense of capitalism, but even President Biden is showing a willingness to pass a bill that bans a platform even his campaign benefits from in attracting young voters.

"If they pass it, I will sign it," Biden told reporters Friday. 

Trump once sought to ban TikTok in his administration's push back against China's forced technology transfer, but he has softened on his stance since in weighing free speech and market.

"I'm not going to nitpick at it, other than to say the intent behind it is something I strongly support and I think it's impressive that it's moving," Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., told the Journal of the latest push he had been behind before.

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., has long been against the government putting its thumb on the scale of a private business that has roots in freedom of expression.

"I don't think we should ban ownership in companies because we don't like some of the different governments that are involved, or some of the different countries," Paul said Friday.

Gallagher's bill was co-authored by Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Ill., who brought in Biden administration Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco to help write the proposed law. The Democrat actually likes the infringement Paul is concerned about.

"Oct. 7 really opened people's eyes to what's happening on TikTok" and its "differential treatment of different topics," Krishnamoorthi told the Journal. "People are concerned about interference using TikTok."

Trump's recent softening on banning TikTok has come after the massive efforts to silence conservatives and ban him after his administration, but it will not be an impediment for the House passage, according to Trump-backing Rep. Kat Cammack, R-Fla.

"I don’t think it will slow momentum in the House because people who have read the legislation, they understand what we’re doing here," the member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee told the Journal. "As an America First candidate, I would never want foreign adversaries to have this data.

"This is the vehicle that is going to move forward."

Eric Mack

Eric Mack has been a writer and editor at Newsmax since 2016. He is a 1998 Syracuse University journalism graduate and a New York Press Association award-winning writer.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


Newsfront
The push to ban TikTok stalled during former President Donald Trump's administration, but it is regaining momentum with a "narrowly tailored" bill that would require it to decouple from China or face being shut down in the U.S.
tiktok, social media, ccp, china, bytedance
522
2024-49-10
Sunday, 10 March 2024 11:49 AM
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