Congress Passes Bill To Force TikTok’s Sale or Ban App

Apr 24, 2024 | Political News

The Senate voted late Tuesday by a wide margin to send legislation to President Joe Biden that would require Chinese owner ByteDance to divest TikTok's U.S. operations within about nine months or face a ban.

The measure, passed by the U.S. House of Representatives on Saturday, has been driven by concerns that China could access Americans' data or surveil them with the app. Biden said he would sign it into law on Wednesday.

“For years we've allowed the Chinese Communist party to control one of the most popular apps in America that was dangerously shortsighted,” said Senator Marco Rubio, the top Republican on the Intelligence Committee. “A new law is going to require its Chinese owner to sell the app. This is a good move for America.”

TikTok, which says it has not shared and would not share U.S. user data with the Chinese government, has argued the law amounts to a ban that would violate the U.S. free speech rights of its users.

The company did not immediately comment but over the weekend, it told its employees that it would quickly go to court to try to block the legislation.