Houlahan issues statement following vote on TikTok legislation

Representative Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA) issued the following statement Wednesday following the vote on the Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Application Act:

“The sixth congressional district of Pennsylvania spans Chester County and Southern Berks County. It is a district of more than 700,000 people: young and old, rich and poor, racially and ethnically diverse, and politically “purple.” It is an enormous task and privilege to serve this beautiful community as our elected U.S. Representative. That service comes in the form of not simply representing our community, it also often comes in the form of leading our community as well.

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I’m in Washington D.C., roughly three out of four weeks, where I actively engage in work on the Intelligence Committee and the Armed Services Committee. Frequently, these meetings are at the classified level. This committee work often informs my other work in D.C. – voting.

To that end, this week, I voted YES on HR 7521: the Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act in favor of requiring TikTok to be financially separated from its parent company, ByteDance, and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

I did not take this vote lightly. I know that many in my community enjoy TikTok, and some, in fact, earn their incomes from the platform as well. And importantly, this vote does not “shut TikTok down,” nor does it mean that Americans cannot access this platform. Rather, it means that the CCP-controlled parent company ByteDance must divest from TikTok so that Americans are to be able to continue using it, knowing that their data and privacy will be protected and knowing that this nation will as well.

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I took this vote because I believe there could be real and present threats to individual Americans, to communities, to this democracy, and to our way of life if TikTok data remains within the grasp of the Chinese Communist Party.

Also, importantly, this vote still must be taken up and passed by the Senate and signed by the President in order to be made law. As such, I look forward to continuing to engage with my community and my colleagues on this important issue.

As always, I take my responsibility to represent and lead my district and community very seriously. As I said, this was not an easy vote, but my first responsibility is to protect and defend this nation and this legislation aims to do just that.”

Background: The Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Application Act prevents app store availability or web hosting services in the U.S. for ByteDance-controlled applications, including TikTok, unless the application severs ties to entities like ByteDance that are subject to the control of a foreign adversary, as defined by Congress in Title 10.

In addition, the bill creates a process for the President to designate certain, specifically defined social media applications that are subject to the control of a foreign adversary—per Title 10—and pose a national security risk. Designated applications will face a prohibition on app store availability and web hosting services in the U.S. unless they sever ties to entities subject to the control of a foreign adversary through divestment.

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Berks Weekly
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