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Rep. Mike Gallagher Suggests Forced Sale of TikTok Could Occur Before Election Day

Rep. Mike Gallagher (Credits: Politico)

Republican Rep. Mike Gallagher from Wisconsin emphasized the urgency of potential action against TikTok, suggesting that the forced sale of the app could occur before the upcoming November election.

During an appearance on “Face the Nation,” Gallagher expressed concerns about the security risks posed by TikTok, echoing longstanding worries among U.S. officials regarding the potential for China’s government to exploit user data for nefarious purposes.

Gallagher highlighted recent legislative efforts to address these concerns, noting that the House had passed a bill requiring ByteDance, TikTok’s parent company, to sell the app within six months or face a ban from U.S. app stores.

Rep. Mike Gallagher (Credits: Select Committee on the Chinese Communist)

He emphasized the financial incentive for ByteDance’s investors to pursue a sale, suggesting that distancing TikTok from China-based ownership could enhance its value and user experience.

On the Democratic side, Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi from Illinois underscored TikTok’s unique threat, characterizing it as a potential tool of foreign manipulation due to its ties to a foreign adversary.

The bipartisan support for the legislation in the House indicates a broad consensus on the need to address the risks associated with TikTok.

However, the fate of the legislation in the Senate remains uncertain. Krishnamoorthi expressed optimism about the bill’s prospects in the Senate, citing positive conversations with senators who are interested in the issue. Yet, the timeline for Senate action remains unclear, leaving the potential for further deliberation and negotiation.

Rep. Mike Gallagher (Credits: Fox News)

Business and tech journalist Kara Swisher, appearing separately on “Face the Nation,” discussed the practical challenges of a potential TikTok sale. Swisher noted the interest of various companies, including Microsoft, Meta, and Apple, in acquiring TikTok.

However, she emphasized the deal’s complexity, highlighting that the algorithm behind TikTok would likely remain under Chinese control, posing a significant hurdle for potential buyers.

The “Face the Nation” discussion highlighted the growing bipartisan concern over TikTok’s security risks and the legislative efforts to address them.

While there is momentum for action, significant challenges remain in navigating the intricacies of a potential TikTok sale and ensuring the protection of user data.

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