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WTAS: Rubio Legislation to Ban TikTok in the United States Receives Widespread Coverage

Dec 16, 2022 | Press Releases

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced bipartisan legislation to ban TikTok from operating in the United States. U.S. Representatives Mike Gallagher (R-WI) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) introduced companion legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives. See press highlights below and watch video highlights here.

  • Fox News (12/14/2022): Senator Rubio: “What we would ban is [TikTok’s] ability to make money in this county. And the reason is because [TikTok is] basically a wholly owned subsidiary of the Communist Party of China.”
  • CNN (12/13/2022): “Senator Marco Rubio [is] among a group of federal lawmakers that introduced legislation to ban TikTok from operating in the United States.”
  • NewsNation (12/14/2022): “This would be an unprecedented thing. The U.S. government has [never] moved to ban a social media company or an app entirely…, but that is exactly what Senator Marco Rubio [is] trying to do…, because [TikTok] is a national security threat.”  
  • CNN (12/14/2022): “Senator Marco Rubio says ‘action is needed to combat the threat from TikTok’ which he calls a ‘puppet of China’s Communist Party.’”

 
Bloomberg: “TikTok Security Deal’s Prospects Are Clouded by FBI’s Doubts, State Bans” (Daniel Flatley, Emily Birnbaum, Bloomberg, 12/13/2022)

  • In the latest signal of opposition to a compromise, a bipartisan group of lawmakers in the Senate and the House, led by Senator Marco Rubio, introduced a bill Tuesday that would ban TikTok from operating in the US. Rubio, a Florida Republican, said “it is time to ban Beijing-controlled TikTok for good.”
  • Rubio and colleagues who introduced the legislation to ban TikTok saw no room for a compromise [on TikTok]. 
  • “We know it’s used to manipulate feeds and influence elections,” Rubio said in a statement. 

 
The Epoch Times: “Bipartisan Legislation Seeks to Ban ‘CCP Puppet Company’ TikTok From US” (Andrew Thornebrooke, The Epoch Times, 12/13/2022)

  • Legislation seeking to ban the app was introduced into both houses of Congress on Dec. 13 by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Reps. Mike Gallagher (R-Wis.) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-Ill.).
  • The lawmakers condemned TikTok’s ties to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) through its parent company ByteDance, and said that the company was collecting Americans’ data for the communist regime.
  • “The federal government has yet to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok,” Rubio said. “This isn’t about creative videos, this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day.”

 
Fox News: “Twitter up in arms as calls to ‘ban TikTok’ grow: ‘Trump was right’” (Jeffrey Clark, Fox News, 12/14/2022)

  • Florida Senator Marco Rubio spearheaded the push to ban TikTok, arguing in a press statement Tuesday that the reasons to bar the app were easily apparent and widely agreed upon: “From the FBI Director to FCC Commissioners to cybersecurity experts, everyone has made clear the risk of TikTok being used to spy on Americans.” 
  • Rubio also exposed TikTok as a Chinese government-sponsored backdoor into Americans’ phones and private data in a Twitter post the next day. “The Communist government of #China can access the private data of any American using @tiktok_us any time they want. Tik Tok should be banned.”

 
Axios: “A new bipartisan bill looks to ban TikTok in the U.S.” (Herb Scribner, Axios, 12/13/2022)

  • Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, the top Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee, announced the legislation on Tuesday.
  • Rubio said TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, is required by Chinese law to turn over TikTok data to the ruling Chinese Communist Party. 

 
Washington Times: “Lawmakers introduce bills with bipartisan support in Congress to ban TikTok in U.S.” (Ryan Lovelace, Washington Times, 12/13/2022)

  • Mr. Rubio criticized the federal government for failing to take any meaningful action against TikTok, which he said influenced elections and answered to the Chinese Communist Party. 
  • “There is no more time to waste on meaningless negotiations with a CCP-puppet company,” Mr. Rubio said. “It is time to ban Beijing-controlled TikTok for good.”

 
Townhall: “It’s Official: Congress Introduces Bill to Ban TikTok” (Spencer Brown, Townhall, 12/13/2022)

  • Lawmakers in both chambers of Congress introduced their legislation to ban social media video app TikTok in the United States, led by Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) in the upper chamber and Reps. Mike Gallagher (R-WI) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) in the House of Representatives. 
  • Senator Rubio criticized the Biden administration for failing “to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok. This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day,” Rubio emphasized. 
  • “We know it’s used to manipulate feeds and influence elections. We know it answers to the People’s Republic of China. There is no more time to waste on meaningless negotiations with a CCP-puppet company,” Rubio said of the Biden administration’s attempts to allow TikTok to remain operational in the U.S. without changing its corporate structure that ties it to the CCP. “It is time to ban Beijing-controlled TikTok for good.”

 
BBC: “US lawmakers unveil TikTok ban bill over China security fears” (Natalie Sherman, BBC, 12/13/2022)

  • Republican Senator Marco Rubio, one of the backers of the legislation, which he said had support from at least one Democrat, argued action is overdue.
  • He said his bill would block and prohibit all transactions from any social media company in, or under the influence of, China, Russia, and “other foreign countries of concern”.
  • “This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day,” he said.

 
The Federalist: “15 Attorneys General Demand Apple, Google Fix TikTok Age Rating” (Tristan Justice, The Federalist, 12/14/2022)

  • According to a report from Forbes Magazine in early December, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) used TikTok to influence voters in the November midterms and push divisive social messaging on the platform owned by a state-sponsored company.… On Tuesday, Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio and Wisconsin GOP Rep. Mike Gallagher proposed bipartisan legislation to ban TikTok’s operations in the United States altogether.

 
CNN: “Why a growing number of states are cracking down on TikTok” (Brian Fung, CNN, 12/14/2022)

  • On Tuesday, Sen. Marco Rubio, the top Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee, and a bipartisan pair of congressmen in the House, introduced new legislation that aims to ban TikTok from operating in the United States. In a statement, Rubio expressed frustration with the lack of action at the federal level.

 
Reuters: “U.S. lawmakers unveil bipartisan bid to ban China’s TikTok” (Alexandra Alper, Reuters, 12/13/2022)

  • Republican Senator Marco Rubio on Tuesday announced bipartisan legislation to ban China’s popular social media app TikTok, ratcheting up pressure on owner ByteDance Ltd amid U.S. fears the app could be used to spy on Americans and censor content.
  • The legislation would block all transactions from any social media company in or under the influence of China and Russia, Rubio’s office said in a news release, adding that a companion bill in the U.S. House of Representatives was sponsored by Republican congressman Mike Gallagher and Democrat Raja Krishnamoorthi.

 
The Hill: “Lawmakers introduce bill to ban TikTok in US” (Olafimihan Oshin, The Hill, 12/13/2022)

  • The bill was introduced by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Reps. Mike Gallagher (R-Wis.) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-Ill.), citing the FBI’s and FCC’s latest concerns about the social media platforms being used to spy on Americans. 
  • “The federal government has yet to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok. This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day,” Rubio said in a statement, adding “we know it’s used to manipulate feeds and influence elections. We know it answers to the People’s Republic of China. There is no more time to waste on meaningless negotiations with a CCP-puppet company. It is time to ban Beijing-controlled TikTok for good.” 

 
CNN: “US lawmakers introduce bill to ban TikTok” (Brian Jung, CNN, 12/13/2022)

  • The new bill by Sen. Marco Rubio, the top Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee, and a bipartisan pair of congressmen in the House, reflects the latest escalation by US policymakers against the Chinese-owned short-form video app. TikTok has faced doubts about its ability to safeguard US user data from the Chinese government.
  • The bill specifically names TikTok and its parent, ByteDance, as social media companies for the purposes of the legislation. Rubio and one of the House sponsors of the bill, Wisconsin Republican Rep. Mike Gallagher, had indicated their intention to introduce the bill in a Washington Post op-ed last month.
  • “The federal government has yet to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok,” Rubio said in a statement. “There is no more time to waste on meaningless negotiations with a CCP-puppet company. It is time to ban Beijing-controlled TikTok for good.”
  • Tuesday’s bill is not the only federal legislation to target TikTok. Last year, US lawmakers proposed a law that would ban TikTok usage by federal agencies, and Rubio introduced a bill that would force some app makers to disclose ownership information. Another bill introduced this fall would prohibit TikTok from allowing China-based employees to access the user data of US citizens.

 
Washington Examiner: “Bipartisan bill introduced to ban TikTok” (Christopher Hutton, Washington Examiner, 12/13/2022)

  • Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI) and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) joined with Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) to introduce new legislation on Tuesday that would block and prohibit all transactions from TikTok and its Chinese parent company, ByteDance, within the U.S. The filing comes amid negotiations between TikTok and the Biden administration to protect the data of American users on the app over national security concerns.
  • “This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day. We know it’s used to manipulate feeds and influence elections,” Rubio said.

 
New York Post: “Bipartisan bill would ban TikTok from US over Communist China ties” (Caitlin Doombos, New York Post, 12/13/2022)

  • Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-Wis.) introduced a bill Tuesday that would ban the popular video-based social media platform because of its links to Beijing, the lawmakers announced Tuesday.
  • The bill, which has bipartisan support, takes aim at TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance, which is required under Chinese law to disclose its data to the Communist Party, according to a statement by Rubio’s office.
  • “This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day,” Rubio said. “We know it’s used to manipulate feeds and influence elections. We know it answers to the People’s Republic of China.”
  • But Rubio in the statement said Biden’s executive order did not go far enough to protect Americans’ data from falling into Chinese hands. “The federal government has yet to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok,” he said. “There is no more time to waste on meaningless negotiations with a CCP-puppet company. It is time to ban Beijing-controlled TikTok for good.”

 
Daily Caller: “Members Of Congress Propose Banning TikTok Nationwide” (Michael Ginsberg, Daily Caller, 12/13/2022)

  • The Anti-Social CCP Act, introduced by Republican Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, Republican Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher, and Democratic Illinois Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi, would prohibit social media companies owned by companies based in China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Cuba, and Venezuela from operating in the U.S. Many members of Congress have expressed concern about TikTok’s collection of user data, and several states have banned government employees from downloading it to their phones.
  • “The federal government has yet to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok. This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day. We know it’s used to manipulate feeds and influence elections. We know it answers to the People’s Republic of China. There is no more time to waste on meaningless negotiations with a CCP-puppet company. It is time to ban Beijing-controlled TikTok for good,” Rubio said in a statement.

 
USA Today: “Lawmakers announces bipartisan legislation that would ban TikTok in the US” (Natalie Neysa Alund, USA Today, 12/13/2022)

  • A handful of American lawmakers, including Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, announced bipartisan legislation on Tuesday that would ban China’s social media app TikTok in the U.S.
  • According to a news release from Rubio’s office, the legislation would block all transactions from any social media company in or under the influence of a “country of concern,” like China and Russia.

 
CNBC: “Lawmakers unveil bipartisan bill that aims to ban TikTok in the U.S.” (Lauren Feiner, CNBC, 12/13/2022)

  • The new bill, introduced by Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and Reps. Mike Gallagher, R-Wisc., and Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Ill., would ban “all transactions from any social media company in, or under the influence of, China, Russia, and several other foreign countries of concern,” according to a press release.

 
MarketWatch: “Marco Rubio Introduces Bill Looking To Ban TikTok In The U.S. Over China Ties” (Emily Bary, MarketWatch, 12/13/2022)

  • Sen. Marco Rubio, a Florida Republican, announced Tuesday that he had introduced a bill that would ban TikTok from operating in the United States. He said the bill was aimed at protecting the information of U.S. users given concerns about TikTok parent ByteDance’s requirements to share data with the Chinese government. “This isn’t about creative videos – this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day,” Rubio said in a press release. 

 
Forbes: “Bipartisan Ban On TikTok Introduced By Sen. Rubio” (Ty Roush, Forbes, 12/13/2022)

  • Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) announced bipartisan legislation Tuesday to ban TikTok in the U.S., citing national security concerns that the app—owned by Chinese firm ByteDance—could be used to spy on Americans, following a surge of states banning the app from government devices.
  • Both Rubio and Gallagher co-authored an op-ed in the Washington Post last month in a call for a national ban on TikTok, citing a Forbes article that revealed 23 of ByteDance’s directors previously worked for Chinese state media publications and a New York Times article that found the app could track user keystrokes.

 
NBC News: “Lawmakers unveil bipartisan bill to ban TikTok nationwide” (Rebecca Shabad, NBC News, 12/13/2022)

  • The legislation is sponsored by Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., with a companion measure introduced in the House by Reps. Mike Gallagher, R-Wis., and Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Ill. The lawmakers said the bill aims to protect Americans from foreign adversaries who might use certain social media to surveil Americans, learn sensitive data about them, and spread influence campaigns or propaganda.

 
The Daily Mail: “Lawmakers from both parties launch bill to BAN TikTok from operating in the US – and follow fives states that have stopped employees from using Chinese-owned app over national security concerns” (Rob Crilly, The Daily Mail, 12/13/2022)

  • Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Florida), who introduced the bill in Senate, said Chinese law meant the app’s owner, ByteDance, was required to hand data to the Chinese Communist Party. 

 
Just the News: “Congressional lawmakers introduce bipartisan bill banning TikTok in United States” (Madeline Hubbard, Just the News, 12/13/2022)

  • The measure was introduced by Florida GOP Sen. Marco Rubio … “The federal government has yet to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok,” Rubio said. “This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day.”

 
The Daily Signal: “Members Of Congress Propose Banning TikTok Nationwide” (Samantha Aschieris, The Daily Signal, 12/13/2022)

  • The legislation, which Gallagher introduced with Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Ill, would “protect Americans from the threat posed by certain foreign adversaries using current or potential future social media companies that those foreign adversaries control to surveil Americans, learn sensitive data about Americans, or spread influence campaigns, propaganda, and censorship.”
  • “The federal government has yet to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok,” Rubio, vice chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and outspoken critic of the Chinese Communist Party, said in a statement on Tuesday. “This isn’t about creative videos—this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day.”
  • Dustin Carmack, a research fellow in cybersecurity, intelligence, and emerging technologies with the Border Security and Immigration Center at The Heritage Foundation, weighed in on the legislation. (The Daily Signal is the news outlet of The Heritage Foundation.) “Senator Rubio and Congressman Gallagher’s bill will do what the Biden administration has failed to do up to this point by endless negotiations with TikTok that will never bring to fruition a true separation from its CCP connections,” Carmack told The Daily Signal in an email.

 
The Blaze: “Bipartisan lawmakers introduce legislation to ban TikTok over threat of Chinese communist spying” (Carlos Garcia, The Blaze, 12/13/2022)

  • “The federal government has yet to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok. This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day,” said Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, one of the sponsors of the bill, in a statement.
  • “We know it’s used to manipulate feeds and influence elections,” Rubio continued in his statement. “We know it answers to the People’s Republic of China. There is no more time to waste on meaningless negotiations with a CCP-puppet company. It is time to ban Beijing-controlled TikTok for good.”

 
Fox Business: “Lawmakers propose bipartisan legislation that would cut off TikTok’s ability to make money in US” (Greg Wehner, Fox Business, 12/13/2022)

  • Republican Sen. Marco Rubio announced the bipartisan legislation to demonetize TikTok, as fears surrounding the app suggest it is being used to spy on Americans and censor content.
  • Rubio’s office said in a press release the legislation would block all transactions from social media companies in or under the influence of Russia and China.
  • “This isn’t about creative videos – this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day,” Rubio said. “We know it’s used to manipulate feeds and influence elections. We know it answers to the People’s Republic of China.” He added that it was time for the U.S. to stop wasting time on “meaningless negotiations with a CCP-puppet company.”

 
Forbes: “Bipartisan Bill To Ban TikTok Could Impact Influencers And Social Media Creators” (Peter Suciu, Forbes, 12/14/2022)

  • Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced legislation this week that proposed blocking and prohibiting all transactions from any social media company in, or under the influence of, China, Russia, and several other foreign countries of concern.

 
Reuters: “U.S. Senate passes bill to bar federal employees from using TikTok on government-owned devices” (David Sherpardson, Reuters, 12/14/2022)

  • Republican Senator Marco Rubio on Tuesday unveiled bipartisan legislation to ban TikTok altogether in the United States, ratcheting up pressure on ByteDance due to U.S. fears the app could be used to spy on Americans and censure content. Rubio also is a sponsor of Hawley’s TikTok government device ban bill.
  • The legislation would block all transactions from any social media company in or under the influence of China and Russia, Rubio’s office said.

 
Politico: “From harmless fun to bipartisan security threat” (Ryan Heath, Politico, 12/14/2022)

  • After announcing in November that they would table legislation to ban TikTok in the U.S., Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-Wis.) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-Ill.) unveiled their bill Tuesday afternoon.
  • Rubio said previous efforts to reform TikTok have been meaningless, adding “it is time to ban Beijing-controlled TikTok for good.”

 
El American: “Bipartisan Congressional Initiative Seeks to Ban TikTok” (Williams Perdomo, El American, 12/14/2022)

  • Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) reported Tuesday that bipartisan legislation has been introduced to ban TikTok from operating in the United States. According to the senator, it is a bill titled “Averting the National Threat of Internet Surveillance, Oppressive Censorship and Influence, and Algorithmic Learning by the Chinese Communist Party Act (ANTI-SOCIAL CCP Act).”
  • Rubio asserted that the legislation would protect Americans by blocking and prohibiting all transactions by any social networking company in or under the influence of China, Russia and several other foreign countries of interest. Representatives Mike Gallagher (R-WI) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) introduced companion legislation in the House of Representatives.
  • “The federal government has yet to take a single meaningful action to protect American users from the threat of TikTok. This isn’t about creative videos — this is about an app that is collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults every day,” Rubio said.

 
Washington Examiner: “More GOP governors join in TikTok bans on state devices, some hold out” (Julia Johson, Washington Examiner, 12/14/2022)

  • On Tuesday, a group of bipartisan federal lawmakers introduced bills to ban the app in the U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Reps. Mike Gallagher (R-WI) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) introduced the Averting the National Threat of Internet Surveillance, Oppressive Censorship and Influence, and Algorithmic Learning by the Chinese Communist Party Act, emphasizing the measure’s urgent nature.

 
The Daily Wire: “Bipartisan Group Of Senators Introduce Bill To Ban Chinese Telecom Giant Huawei” (John Rigolizzo, The Daily Wire, 12/14/2022)

  • The bill to ban Huawei comes amid a similar effort by bipartisan lawmakers to block Chinese-owned social media platform TikTok. Senator Marco Rubio introduced the legislation after announcing plans to do so last month with Representative Mike Gallagher (R-WI). Gallagher and Representative Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL) introduced paired legislation in the House as well.

 
Fox Business: “TikTok ban is not if but when” (Greg Wehner, Fox Business, 12/15/2022)

  • The proposal was introduced by Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, as fears surrounding TikTok suggest it is a Trojan horse, of sorts, being used to spy on Americans and censor content.… Rubio’s legislation is titled the Averting the National Threat of Internet Surveillance, Oppressive Censorship and Influence, and Algorithmic Learning by the Chinese Communist Party Act, or ANTI-SOCIAL CCP Act. 
  • Rubio spoke out early on about the threat TikTok poses. Others who have raised concern include FBI Director Christopher Wray, who sounded the alarm, Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines, who said parents should be concerned about the platform.
  • “I think at the end of this week, really the fundamental question has changed,” FCC Chairman Brendan Carr said. “It’s no longer whether TikTok is going to be banned, in terms of its current operations in the U.S., but a question of when.”
  • In a press release, Rubio said the ban is not about creative videos, but instead was about an app collecting data on tens of millions of American children and adults each day. “We know it’s used to manipulate feeds and influence elections,” he said. “We know it answers to the People’s Republic of China.”