Biden Reveals His Intentions To Ban What?

Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

(TargetLiberty.org) – Friday, President Biden expressed his willingness to endorse a swiftly processed bipartisan legislation aimed at the prohibition of TikTok, should Congress approve the bill. He emphasized his readiness to sign the “Protecting Americans From Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act” into law during a conversation with journalists.

This legislative proposal, brought forth by Representatives Mike Gallagher (Republican from Wisconsin) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (Democrat from Illinois), has garnered unanimous support from the House Energy and Commerce Committee—a notable achievement considering its introduction merely two days prior. Both Gallagher and Krishnamoorthi hold significant positions in a special House committee dedicated to examining China’s influence.

The movement of this bill is rapid, with House Majority Leader Steve Scalise (Republican from Louisiana) announcing plans for a House floor vote in the coming week via a statement on X, previously known as Twitter.

Despite some Democrats, including the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Ranking Member Frank Pallone (Democrat from New Jersey), expressing reservations about the expedited process utilized by Republicans, they have nonetheless backed the bill. Their support stems from national security worries linked to TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, which is based in China.

TikTok has vocally contested these accusations, advocating against the legislation that mandates ByteDance to either sell TikTok or face a prohibition in U.S. app stores and web hosting services, effectively blocking access to the platform. The bill allocates a 165-day period for ByteDance to comply post-enactment.

The critique from TikTok highlights the bill’s seeming bias towards an outright ban of the app in the U.S., as indicated by a company spokesperson. In a proactive stance against the bill, TikTok urged its users to contact Congress, aiming to thwart the bill’s progression.

Moreover, the bill not only targets ByteDance and TikTok but also establishes a framework for identifying other applications that could pose a national security threat due to connections with foreign adversaries, including China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran.

The legislation has faced opposition from various corners, including the ACLU and the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, who argue it could infringe on free speech rights.

Intriguingly, former President Trump, who attempted a ban on TikTok during his tenure and is eyeing a return to office, has expressed his dissent. He speculates that such a ban might inadvertently favor Meta, the parent entity of Facebook, which had previously suspended his account before reinstating it last year.

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