RFK Jr. threatens to challenge TikTok ban: It's just a 'smoke screen'

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Independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. threatened to challenge a potential TikTok ban Friday, as efforts to block the video app in the U.S. came closer to reality earlier this week.

“I’m going to file a lawsuit challenging the TikTok ban on Constitutional grounds,” Kennedy wrote on social media platform X. “Don’t be fooled — the TikTok ban is not about China harvesting your data. That’s a smoke screen.”

“Intelligence agencies from lots of countries, especially ours, are harvesting your data from everywhere all the time,” he added.

His comments come just days after President Biden signed a $95 billion national security package that includes language to ban TikTok in the U.S. if the app’s Chinese parent company ByteDance, does not sell the app. ByteDance officials said they have no intention of selling the app, despite a potential ban.

“Foreign media reports that ByteDance is exploring the sale of TikTok are untrue,” the company said in a statement, adding that it “doesn’t have any plan to sell TikTok.”

A spokesperson for TikTok also said in a statement that the law is “unconstitutional” and that they “will challenge it in court.”

Kennedy echoed the sentiment, arguing that China doesn’t own the majority of TikTok. He added that the company has already agreed to put its data behind a U.S. firewall, but “the Biden administration rejected that deal.”

“Congress and the administration don’t understand that TikTok is an entrepreneurial platform for thousands of American young people,” he wrote. “They want to screw them over just so they can pretend to be tough on China.”

“The TikTok ban is yet another example of how neither political party has any compunctions about sacrificing your freedoms, rights, and choices, when it serves their political interests,” Kennedy said.

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