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HomeNewsHouse passes Bill to force TikTok sale from Chinese owner or ban...

House passes Bill to force TikTok sale from Chinese owner or ban the app

The

House

on Wednesday passed a

bill

with broad bipartisan support that would force

TikTok

’s

Chinese owner

to either sell the hugely popular video app or be banned in the United States.
The move escalates a showdown between Beijing and Washington over the control of a wide range of technologies that could affect national security, free speech and the social media industry.

Republican leaders fast-tracked the bill through the House with limited debate, and it passed on a lopsided vote of 352-65, reflecting widespread backing for legislation that would take direct aim at China in an election year.
The action came despite TikTok’s efforts to mobilize its 170 million U.S. users against the measure and amid the Biden administration’s push to convince lawmakers that Chinese ownership of the platform poses grave national security risks to the United States, including the ability to meddle in elections.

The result was a bipartisan coalition behind the measure that included Republicans, who defied former President Donald Trump in supporting it, and Democrats, who fell in line behind a bill that President Joe Biden has said he would sign.
The bill faces a difficult road to passage in the Senate, where Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., the majority leader, has been noncommittal about bringing it to the floor for a vote and where some lawmakers have vowed to fight it. And even if it passes the Senate and becomes law, it is likely to face legal challenges.

But Wednesday’s vote was the first time a measure that could widely

ban

TikTok for consumers was approved by a full chamber of Congress. The app has been under threat since 2020, with lawmakers increasingly arguing that China’s relationship with TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, raises national security risks. The bill is aimed at getting ByteDance to sell TikTok to non-Chinese owners within six months. The president would sign off on the

sale

if it resolved national security concerns. If that sale did not happen, the app would be banned.
Rep. Mike Gallagher, R-Wis., who is among the lawmakers leading the bill, said on the floor before the vote that it “forces TikTok to break up with the Chinese Communist Party.”
“This is a common-sense measure to protect our national security,” he said.