Second Judge Blocks Commerce Department’s TikTok Ban

President Donald Trump gave TikTok six weeks to sell its US operations
AFP Olivier DOULIERY

A second judge has granted a preliminary injunction blocking the U.S. Commerce Department from imposing restrictions on the Chinese-owned social media platform TikTok, including a ban that was supposed to take place in early November.

CNBC reports that a second judge granted a preliminary injunction late on Monday blocking the U.S. Commerce Department from imposing restrictions on the Chinese-owned video-sharing app TikTok that could see the app banned in the United States.

District Judge Carl Nichols in Washington issued an order in a suit filed by TikTok’s parent company ByteDance over a month after Judge Wendy Bettelstrone in Pennsylvania blocked the same restrictions from going into effect on November 12 in a lawsuit brought by popular TikTok users.

A spokesperson for TikTok stated that the company was “pleased that the court agreed with us and granted a preliminary injunction.” Nichols was named to the bench by President Trump last year and ruled that the Commerce Department “likely overstepped” its legal authority in issuing the TikTok ban “and acted in an arbitrary and capricious manner by failing to consider obvious alternatives.”

The Commerce Department commented on the judge’s ruling stating that it would “vigorously defend” President Trump’s executive order and said that it “is fully consistent with law and promotes legitimate national security interests. The government will continue to comply with the injunctions.”

The Trump administration declined to grant ByteDance a new extension of President Trump’s August order on Friday which required the company to divest TikTok’s U.S. assets. The Treasury Department said on Friday that the government “is engaging with ByteDance to complete the divestment and other steps necessary to resolve the national security risks.”

A U.S. appeals court will hear arguments on Judge Nichols’ app store ban injunction on December 14.

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 lucasnolan@protonmail.com

.

Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.