WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — The Federal government is putting its entire workforce on notice and demanding they delete the TikTok app from their work devices before the end of the month.
But Republicans said they are concerned over the video app’s ties to China and want to see further action done.
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) was one of the key figures in getting the federal ban passed through Congress last year. Now, he’s calling for a nationwide ban.
“This is the first step … the truth is it’s a huge danger to our kids It’s a backdoor for communist China,” Hawley said.
Earlier this week, former U.S. Security Advisor Matthew Pottinger warned lawmakers that without such a ban, the Chinese government will have the outsized ability to influence the American public.
“(To manipulate our social discourse our news) to censor and amplify what tens of millions of Americans see and read,” Pottinger said.
TikTok has since denied that it shares American data with China, but some lawmakers aren’t taking its word for it. On Wednesday, Republicans on the House Foreign Affairs Committee voted unanimously to advance a national ban on the app.
The committee’s Democrats all voted against the ban. Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.) called the process rushed and said he’d prefer to wait until a federal investigation is finished. President Joe Biden ordered that review of TikTok’s data practices back in 2021.
White House officials said the administration remains concerned but is, for now, stopping short of calling for a national ban.