(DailyVantage.com) – New York Democratic Congressman Jamaal Bowman defended the controversial Chinese app TikTok in an interview on March 21 amid bipartisan attempts to ban it in the United States.
In an interview with NBC News, Bowman noted that the app allowed more than 150 million Americans to express themselves online, before questioning why Congress would want to take that ability away.
Bowman argued that while many other popular apps were also created by Chinese companies, they hadn’t prompted the same number of concerns as TikTok because TikTok was being intentionally used as a “boogeyman” and for “political fearmongering.”
The congressman concluded that he hadn’t seen any sizeable evidence to suggest that TikTok was being used by the Chinese government for espionage and accused politicians of basing their opinions of the app on xenophobia.
To further make his case against a potential ban of TikTok, Bowman held a press conference on Wednesday, March 22, along with Wisconsin Rep. Mark Pocan and several TikTok content creators.
Bowman is an avid user of TikTok and uses the platform to share his speeches and policies to a younger audience. The congressman has nearly 160,000 followers on the app and his videos have received more than 2 million likes.
A bipartisan group of congressmen and senators introduced legislation in December 2022 which sought to ban TikTok across the US, deeming the app a public security “threat” which could be used by the United States’ enemies to surveil Americans and spread propaganda. The legislation was introduced by Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio, who has long been a critic of TikTok and China in general.
In February 2023, US President Joe Biden’s administration ordered the removal of TikTok from all government devices in a move which was condemned by China’s foreign ministry. Similar directives have been issued in Australia, the United Kingdom, and New Zealand, while the UK’s British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) also told its employees in March 2023 to delete the app.
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