CHRIS WHITE TECH REPORTER
TikTok threatened to sue President Donald Trump Friday for signing an executive order prohibiting individuals from communicating with the Chinese social media app’s parent company over the next 45 days.
The executive order, which also impacts Chinese app WeChat, was issued Thursday night “without any due process,” TikTok said in a press statement.
“For nearly a year, we have sought to engage with the U.S. government in good faith to provide a constructive solution to the concerns that have been expressed,” the statement said. Trump has “paid no attention to facts” and his administration has instead “tried to insert itself into negotiations between private businesses,” TikTok said.
“We will pursue all remedies available to us in order to ensure that the rule of law is not discarded and that our company and our users are treated fairly — if not by the Administration, then by the U.S. courts,” the company said.
Trump’s executive orders bar “any transaction by any person, or with respect to any property, subject to the jurisdiction of the United States,” with ByteDance and Tencent Holdings, parent companies of TikTok and WeChat, respectively. The orders ban individuals from communicating with the parent companies for 45 days.
The president suggested on Aug. 3 that he is amenable to the idea of Microsoft purchasing the upstart Chinese company, so long as the acquisition comes by Sept. 15. Trump also said a portion of profits from a potential sale should go to the United States Treasury.
Americans should download the app “only if you want your private information in the hands of the Chinese Communist Party,” U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said during a July 7 Fox News interview. Other U.S. officials and lawmakers have expressed concern that TikTok may be providing user data to Beijing officials.
TikTok users have at times been political. A group of users on the app coordinated an effort to get people who didn’t intend on attending a Trump campaign rally in Tulsa sign up for it, CNN reported in June.
One TikTok post urging fans of Korean pop to sign up for the June rally received over 100,000 likes. Mary Jo Laupp, a 51-year-old woman in Iowa, reportedly kickstarted the troll campaign.
The White House has not responded to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment about TikTok’s threat.
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