House Bans TikTok in the U.S., Crenshaw Votes 'Hell Yes'

House Bans TikTok in the U.S., Crenshaw Votes 'Hell Yes'

Jackson Bakich
Jackson Bakich
|
March 13, 2024

U.S. Representatives from the state of Texas such as Representative Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) shared their opinions regarding the passage of the Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act in the House. This bill, introduced by Representative Mike Gallagher (R-WI) will prohibit the “distributing, maintaining, or providing internet hosting services for a foreign adversary controlled application (e.g., TikTok).”

The bill will shut down TikTok in the United States if ByteDance, the parent company, doesn’t divest from the application 165 days after the bill’s passage, according to Fox News.

It would also require a non-foreign adversary to purchase TikTok if it wants to remain in operation in the United States.

The legislation needed two-thirds support to advance from the lower chamber. It passed with a 352-65 tally.

The majority of Republicans voted for the measure. However, other Republicans feel the bill could go too far in allowing the Executive Branch more power to ban websites, apps, or internet entities due to ambiguous language in the legislation.

Representative Brian Babin (R-TX) voted for it. He kept his statement brief.

“Today, the House acted to protect the American people from being targeted, surveilled, or influenced by the CCP. TikTok: time to break up with Beijing,” said Rep. Babin.

Representative Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) had a strong rationale for his “yes” vote.

“We just passed legislation out of the House that will separate TikTok from the CCP. You‘ve probably heard lies that this bill is a Trojan horse, or that it doesn’t solve every problem on planet earth. The truth is, this bill just says that TikTok can’t be owned by our enemies,” said Rep. Crenshaw. “I voted hell yes. The current owner of Tik Tok, ByteDance, is a Chinese company. They’re bound by Chinese surveillance law to give American data to the CCP. And oh, by the way — the CCP even has [a] board seat on ByteDance.”

He concluded by taking a slight jab at his Democratic and Republican colleagues for voting against the bill.

“Voting against this bill is a vote for the Chinese Communist Party. The opponents of this bill aren’t defending free speech, they’re defending Chinese access to American data and American minds. Not a good look.”

However, Republicans such as Congressman Greg Steube (R-FL) provided a lengthy thread of his own with a rationale for why TikTok is a “dangerous app,” while simultaneously not being super thrilled with the bill’s contents.

“There is no doubt about it: TikTok is a dangerous app controlled by Chinese interests. However, that does not mean the bill in front of the House today is the appropriate solution to the national security threat TikTok imposes. I’ve read the bill and am extremely concerned its text could be weaponized against conservatives and social media sites like X and Truth Social … ‘Controlled by a foreign adversary’ is defined in section 2(g)(1). In subsection (C), things get really problematic. It says that ‘controlled by a foreign adversary’ can also include ‘a person subject to the direction or control of a foreign person or entity.’”

Rep. Steube continued, “If subjection (C) was removed from this bill, I would be supportive of this bill. But the fact is, this bill gives tremendous leeway to the executive branch to determine what this phrase means, and ambiguity in the law opens the door to abuse. It goes beyond TikTok and foreign adversaries. It has the potential to affect American owned companies.”

The Senate will need to pass the measure to send it to the President’s desk.

This is a developing story.

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Jackson Bakich

Jackson Bakich

Born in Orlando but raised in Lake County, Florida, Jackson Bakich is currently a senior at Florida State University. Growing up in the sunshine state, Bakich co-hosted the political talk radio show "Lake County Roundtable" (WLBE) and was a frequent guest for "Lake County Sports Show" (WQBQ). Currently, he is the Sports Editor of the FSView and the co-host of "Tomahawk Talk" (WVFS), a sports talk radio program covering Florida State athletics in Tallahassee.

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