President Donald Trump stated during a press conference that he is not prepared to sign off on a recently announced partnership between Silicon Valley giant Oracle and the Chinese-owned app TikTok until national security concerns are completely alleviated.
AP reports that during a recent press conference, President Trump said that he expects to receive a report this week about Oracle’s bid to join a partnership with the Chinese-owned app TikTok but that he will not sign off on the deal until all fears of national security are alleviated.
“I’m not prepared to sign off on anything. I have to see the deal,” President Trump told White House reporters on Wednesday evening. “It has to be 100% as far as national security is concerned,” Trump said.
President Trump has previously stated that he would ban TikTok if it wasn’t sold to an American company. An executive order issued by President Trump on August 6 stated that the app “reportedly censors content that the Chinese Communist Party deems politically sensitive,” is potentially a source for disinformation campaigns and “threatens to allow the Chinese Communist Party access to Americans’ personal and proprietary information.” Trump had praised Oracle’s bid during negotations, but that was to buy the U.S. operations of TikTok, not become a “trusted technology partner.”
TikTok has maintained that it does not share U.S. user data with the Chinese government and would not do so. Tiktok parent company ByteDance was reportedly angered by Microsoft calling it a security risk. The disagreement ended Microsoft’s bid to buy TikTok. President Trump further stated recently that the Treasury could not receive any payment in exchange for the U.S. signing off on the deal which surprised him.
“Amazingly, I find that you’re not allowed to do that,” President Trump said. “If they’re willing to make big payments to the government they’re not allowed because … there’s no legal path to doing that. … How foolish can we (the United States) be?”
Six Republican senators led by Marco Rubio of Florida on Wednesday sent a letter to President Trump expressing their reservations that TikTok’s partnership agreement with Oracle appears to have “significant unresolved national security issues” and that a deal “must ensure that TikTok’s U.S. operations, data and algorithms are entirely outside the control of ByteDance or any Chinese-state directed actors.”
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Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan or contact via secure email at the address firstname.lastname@example.org