Banning TikTok Sets the Wrong Precedent


H.R. 7521 is agnostic as to how TikTok’s parent, ByteDance, divests as long as they abstain from selling to an American adversary. We flesh out our position on this matter more fully in our Key Vote NO here.

FreedomWorks will count the vote on the Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act, H.R. 7521, when calculating our Scorecard for 2024 and reserves the right to score and weigh any related votes. The scorecard is used to determine eligibility for the FreedomFighter Award, which recognizes Members of the House and Senate who consistently vote to support economic freedom and individual liberty.


Washington, D.C. – H.R. 7521, referred to as the TikTok ban bill, unanimously passed out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee 50-0. It likely heads to a full vote on the House floor this week. Adam Brandon, FreedomWorks president, commented:

“Social media represents a serious challenge in our society. The hyperpartisanship that has infected Congress feeds on ‘likes,’ ‘shares,’ and ‘retweets’ and grows like a cancer keeping us from solving the bigger problems. It’s also clear that some Americans have become addicted to the hits of dopamine that come with the instant gratification of social media. We’re frustrated by the state of political discourse in the United States, but we’re also fortunate to live in a free society where we can express our views. There’s always going to be excess with freedom. We believe parents should police their kids’ online activity, including their exposure to social media, not Congress or regulators.”

“We’re also aware of concerns about Chinese influence in the United States. We’re in a very volatile geopolitical environment right now, and Congress must be cautious about what steps are taken to mitigate that influence. Policy responses like the Prohibition of Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act are exactly the wrong way to address Chinese influence.”

“Requiring American ownership of any company or application, like TikTok, sets a dangerous precedent. We need and want foreign investment in the United States. Look at US Steel. This is a company that had been in decline. It was recently purchased by a Japanese company, Nippon Steel. Had US Steel failed, it would have reduced domestic competition in the United States. Do we need reasonable safeguards for TikTok? We’re open to safeguards, but we’re not open to any mandate of American ownership of any company. This seems to be driven by emotion and reactionary politics.” 


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