A spokesperson for U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi confirmed Friday that she supports including legislation prohibiting TikTok on government devices in a federal funding bill.
The Senate unanimously approved Sen. Josh Hawley’s bill on Wednesday night. The bill is the latest legislative effort to crack down on the Chinese-owned short-form video app, which has over a billion users worldwide.
Many officials and experts are concerned that TikTok, a subsidiary of the Chinese firm ByteDance, could jeopardize US national security by jeopardizing user data and providing sensitive information to the Chinese government.
Republican governors in New Hampshire, Idaho, and Georgia have recently issued executive orders prohibiting the social media app from being used on state-issued devices, joining North Dakota, Iowa, Alabama, Utah, Oklahoma, Texas, South Dakota, and Maryland in doing so.
According to a statement issued by the US Commerce Department, TikTok and its parent company, ByteDance, have the ability to “threaten the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States” following the failure of Former President Donald Trump’s order to ban downloads of the app and WeChat in 2020. According to the Washington Post, after Trump’s order was revoked, President Joe Biden promoted a security review of the app.
If the House approves the ban and its inclusion in government spending legislation next week, the bill will require presidential approval, though Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the White House has remained non-committal on the subject.
The sources for this piece includes an article in Reuters.