US lawmakers discuss changes to TikTok ban bill amid lobbying and concerns

The lawmakers are now focusing on amendments aimed at addressing criticisms and concerns, including the potential impact on individual Americans and the perceived expansion of government authority.

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US lawmakers are discussing potential changes to a bill that would give the Biden administration new authority to ban TikTok. Democratic Senator Mark Warner, who supports the legislation, revealed that TikTok’s aggressive lobbying efforts have slowed down its progress. 

Lawmakers are working on amendments to address criticisms and concerns, such as the impact on individual Americans and the expansion of government power. The proposed legislation would empower the Commerce Department to review and block transactions involving foreign information and communication technology that pose national security risks. TikTok has not yet responded to Warner’s comments. 

In a separate incident, Republican Senator Rand Paul blocked a bill to ban TikTok, arguing that it gives the president excessive authority. The Biden administration previously called on TikTok’s Chinese owners to divest their stakes or face a ban. Warner believes legislation is necessary to establish a fair process for dealing with Chinese-controlled apps. 

TikTok claims to have invested over $1.5 billion in data security measures and denies spying allegations. The company is currently fighting against a ban imposed by the state of Montana, with a hearing scheduled for 12 October.