TikTok on Wednesday condemned a bill that would give President Joe Biden the power to ban the app without restrictions, saying it was a “ban on the export of American culture.”
“We’re disappointed to see this rushed piece of legislation move forward despite its considerable negative impact on the free speech rights of millions of Americans who use and love TikTok,” the app’s communications team tweeted.
On Wednesday, the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee approved the bill that would authorize the Biden administration to enact a nationwide ban on TikTok.
The committee voted along party lines, with Republicans supporting the measures citing national security concerns, and Democrats opposing the rushed legislation.
The Republican sponsor of the bill, Rep Michael McCaul, described TikTok as a “spy balloon into their phone.”
Biden has not yet signaled whether he would sign the bill, which still requires a vote by the full House and Senate.
Earlier this week, the White House gave federal agencies 30 days to delete TikTok from government-issued mobile devices over concerns of access to user data, because it is owned by ByteDance, a Chinese company. Both Canada and the European Union have enacted similar measures.
On Tuesday, the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs mocked the U.S. for being insecure about an app for “young people.” But Chinese social media users were quick to call out their own government for enacting multiple bans on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook.