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Former Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin creating group to buy TikTok

His comments come a day after the House passed a bill that could force ByteDance to sell the platform or TikTok would be banned in the U.S.
Former Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin creating group to buy TikTok
Posted at 10:44 AM, Mar 14, 2024

Former Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is reportedly putting together a group of investors in attempt to buy TikTok from its parent company ByteDance as a bipartisan bill that could ban the popular social media app in the U.S. makes its way through Congress.

"I think the legislation should pass and I think it should be sold," Mnuchin told CNBC Thursday morning. "It’s a great business and I’m going to put together a group to buy TikTok."

SEE MORE: TikTok lobbies to fight back against potential ban in the US

Mnuchin's comments come a day after the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a bill that would give Chinese-owned ByteDance six months to divest from TikTok or the app would face an outright ban in the U.S. The bill's future in the Senate is unclear, but if it reaches President Biden's desk, the president has said he does intend to sign it into law.

Lawmakers have said banning TikTok is not the overall goal of the legislation. Instead, the effort is purportedly aimed at severing the app's ties with ByteDance, which is owned and operated under the Chinese government.

SEE MORE: Most Americans think TikTok is a national security threat, poll finds

Rep. Mike Gallagher, R-Wis., has been working alongside his Democratic colleague Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Ill., to eliminate any connection between TikTok and China, citing national security concerns over the country's influence and access to user data.

"TikTok can continue to exist in the United States as long as it's not effectively controlled by the Chinese Communist Party," Gallagher said. ""That will make for a better user experience. People won't have to worry about manipulation of algorithms, they won't have to worry about a hostile foreign adversary potentially manipulating the news that Americans consume."

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