Bannon Raises Concerns Over Trump’s TikTok Reversal Amid Allegations of Financial Influence

Steve Bannon Suggests Donald Trump Has Been Bought

Steve Bannon, once a close advisor to Donald Trump, has raised speculation regarding the former president’s apparent change in stance on TikTok, suggesting it may be linked to financial incentives.

TikTok, the widely popular video-sharing platform predominantly used by younger demographics, has faced renewed scrutiny from U.S. lawmakers due to concerns over data privacy and its Chinese ownership under ByteDance. Amid allegations that user data could be shared with the Chinese government, bipartisan efforts have emerged to address these concerns.

A recent bill proposed by members of the House Select Committee on the Strategic Competition aims to pressure ByteDance into divesting TikTok by restricting its presence in American app stores and granting the Executive Branch authority to act against social media companies associated with foreign adversaries.

This legislation, endorsed by the House Committee on Energy & Commerce in a unanimous vote, has faced resistance from TikTok, which perceives it as a ban and has urged users to rally against it.

Bannon Raises Concerns Over Trump's TikTok Reversal Amid Allegations of Financial Influence
Bannon Raises Concerns Over Trump’s TikTok Reversal Amid Allegations of Financial Influence (Credits: ABC News)

Despite previously expressing support for actions against TikTok due to its Chinese ties, Trump, a prominent figure in the 2024 GOP presidential race, voiced opposition to the bill. In a post on Truth Social, Trump cited unsubstantiated claims of election fraud and argued against measures targeting TikTok, suggesting they would benefit competitors like Facebook, whom he accused of electoral misconduct.

Reports have highlighted a possible correlation between Trump’s altered stance and a meeting with Jeff Yass, a conservative hedge fund manager with significant investments in TikTok. Yass allegedly threatened to withdraw support from GOP lawmakers backing the divestment bill, raising questions about potential financial influence.

Bannon, instrumental in Trump’s 2016 campaign and early presidency, voiced suspicions about these developments on Gettr, linking Trump’s reversal on TikTok to a concept he termed “Yass Coin,” without providing concrete evidence.

In August 2020, Trump issued an executive order mandating ByteDance to sell its U.S. assets and delete associated data within 90 days, citing national security concerns stemming from its acquisition of Musical.ly.

While connections between Trump’s meeting with Yass and his TikTok stance remain speculative, the situation underscores ongoing debates over tech regulation, foreign ownership, and potential financial motivations influencing political decisions.

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