Wed. May 29th, 2024

Senate Commerce chair backs amended bill that could ban TikTok  

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell May19,2024

Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) announced her support Wednesday for a bipartisan bill that would force TikTok’s Chinese parent company to sell the app or face a ban in the U.S. after it was updated to extend the period of time for the sale.

The Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversarial Controlled Applications Act passed the House in a broad bipartisan vote in March, just a week after it was initially introduced. Support from the Commerce Committee chair clears a path for it to proceed in the upper chamber.  

“I’m very happy that Speaker [Mike] Johnson [R-La.] and House leaders incorporated my recommendation to extend the ByteDance divestment period from six months to a year. As I’ve said, extending the divestment period is necessary to ensure there is enough time for a new buyer to get a deal done. I support this updated legislation,” Cantwell said in a statement Wednesday evening.  

The tweak amends one of the concerns critics had raised about the bill, specifically that it gave a short timeframe for TikTok’s parent company to sell the app before it would be banned.  

But other lawmakers haver raised different concerns that could still emerge as the legislation goes forward. Some progressive Democrats criticized the bill as infringing on users’ free speech rights.  

The update to the bill was made as part of a package of legislation House GOP leaders unveiled Wednesday. In addition to including the forced TikTok sale provision, the legislation also includes new sanctions on Iran, military aide to Ukraine aide in the form of a forgivable loan and a provision to give the federal government authority to use seized Russian assets to pay for the costs of Ukrainian reconstruction.  

Called the “21st Century Act,” the bill is the fourth piece of a larger foreign-aide package that the House is expected to consider one at a time in a vote on Saturday.  

TikTok has pushed back strongly on the Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversarial Controlled Applications Act and has denied accusations that the app poses national security threats.  

If the bill were to pass, President Biden said he would sign it into law.  

However, even if it becomes law, a potential ban may be blocked in court, Other attempts to ban the app by the former Trump administration and states have been stifled in federal court.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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2 thoughts on “Senate Commerce chair backs amended bill that could ban TikTok  ”
  1. As a concerned citizen, I believe it is crucial to extend the divestment period for TikTok. I agree with Chair Cantwell’s support for the updated legislation as it allows for a more reasonable timeframe for the sale to take place. This amendment addresses a key issue that critics had raised. It’s important to balance national security interests with ensuring fair processes for companies involved.

  2. I’m very happy that Speaker [Mike] Johnson [R-La.] and House leaders incorporated my recommendation to extend the ByteDance divestment period from six months to a year. As I’ve said, extending the divestment period is necessary to ensure there is enough time for a new buyer to get a deal done. I support this updated legislation.

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