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‘We simply have no choice’: Desperate to avoid a ban, TikTok sues the Trump administration

The Trump administration has sought to ban the Chinese-owned company or force the sale of its US operations.

‘We simply have no choice’: Desperate to avoid a ban, TikTok sues the Trump administration
[Photo: TikTok; Tia Dufour/The White House/Flickr]
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TikTok is suing the Trump administration over an executive order seeking to ban the Chinese-owned video platform in the United States, saying in a blog post that it is unconstitutionally being denied due process even as it has sought to work with the federal government.

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“By banning TikTok with no notice or opportunity to be heard (whether before or after the fact), the executive order violates the due process protections of the Fifth Amendment,” according to a section of the complaint quoted in the blog post.

TikTok reported that it provided “voluminous information” to the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which evaluates foreign companies doing business in the United States in a way that could endanger national security. And, the company says, it “took the extraordinary step of offering to restructure their U.S. business,” but to no avail.

“To be clear, we far prefer constructive dialogue over litigation,” company officials wrote. “But with the Executive Order threatening to bring a ban on our US operations—eliminating the creation of 10,000 American jobs and irreparably harming the millions of Americans who turn to this app for entertainment, connection, and legitimate livelihoods that are vital especially during the pandemic—we simply have no choice.”

TikTok, owned by Chinese company ByteDance, has been reportedly in discussions with Oracle, Microsoft, and other potential suitors to sell off its Western operations.

The White House and President Trump, who has been vocal about perceived economic and national security threats from China, have yet to comment on the lawsuit.

About the author

Steven Melendez is an independent journalist living in New Orleans.

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