The bill to ban TikTok passes in the US House of Representatives.

The bill to ban TikTok passes in the US House of Representatives.

The bill to ban TikTok passes in the US House of Representatives.

A bill targeting TikTok, the popular video-sharing platform, was overwhelmingly passed by the US House of Representatives on Wednesday. This legislation mandates TikTok to sever ties with its Chinese parent company or face expulsion from the United States. The move deals a significant blow to the app, which has seen a global surge in popularity but has also raised concerns regarding its Chinese ownership and potential allegiance to the Communist Party of China.

The vote in favor of the proposed law was decisive, with 352 lawmakers supporting it and only 65 opposing—a rare display of unity in the politically polarized atmosphere of Washington.

Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson hailed the bipartisan vote as a demonstration of Congress’ stance against Chinese attempts to infiltrate and influence American affairs, emphasizing the need to deter such adversarial actions.

While the House has spoken decisively, the fate of the bill remains uncertain in the Senate, where some influential figures are hesitant to take such drastic measures against an app boasting 170 million users in the US.

President Joe Biden has expressed readiness to sign the bill, officially named the Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act, into law should it reach his desk, according to the White House.

TikTok, in response to the legislation, criticized the process as opaque and criticized the rush to pass the bill, asserting its potentially detrimental impact on the economy, small businesses, and the millions of Americans who utilize the platform.

The bill, which gained momentum rapidly in recent days, imposes a 180-day deadline for TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, to divest itself of the app or face removal from major app stores in the US, including Apple and Google.

Additionally, it grants the president authority to designate other applications as national security threats if they are under the influence of countries deemed adversarial to the US.

The renewed scrutiny of TikTok caught the company off guard, according to reports from the Wall Street Journal. Executives at TikTok were reportedly reassured when President Biden joined the platform last month as part of his reelection campaign.


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