Congressional lawmakers introduce bipartisan bill banning TikTok in United States
One lawmaker said allowing TikTok to operate is like "allowing the U.S.S.R. to buy up the New York Times, Washington Post, and major broadcast networks during the Cold War."
Members of Congress on Tuesday introduced bipartisan legislation to ban TikTok from operating in the United States, citing concerns that the short-video social media platform is being used to spy on Americans.
The measure was introduced by Florida GOP Sen. Marco Rubio.
If passed and signed into law, the National Threat of Internet Surveillance, Oppressive Censorship and Influence and Algorithmic Learning by the Chinese Communist Party Act would block all transactions from any social media company based in Russia, China, Iran, North Korea, Cuba or Venezuela.
Similar legislation is being introduced in the House by Reps. Raja Krishnamoorthi, an Illinois Democrat, and Mike Gallagher, a Wisconsin Republican.
"The federal government has yet to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok," Rubio said. "This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day."
TikTok is owned by the China-based company ByteDance.
Gallagher called TikTok "digital fentanyl" and compared it to "allowing the U.S.S.R. to buy up the New York Times, Washington Post, and major broadcast networks during the Cold War."
Krishnamoorthi said: "Recent revelations surrounding the depth of TikTok’s ties to the CCP highlight the urgency of protecting Americans from these risks before it’s too late."