Senate briefed on TikTok risks, mulls potential ban

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The Big Story 

Senators received a classified briefing about potential risks posed by TikTok, and the top lawmaker on the Intelligence Committee said he wants to make some of that information available to the public. 

© Allison Robbert

Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Mark Warner (D-Va.) said he is trying to get information declassified about risks posed by TikTok to better inform the public.  


His aim to declassify some of the information is part of his broader push for the Senate to pass a bill that would force TikTok’s Chinese-based parent company ByteDance to sell the app or face a ban in the U.S., following a broad bipartisan vote for the legislation in the House last week.  


“We just had a very powerful briefing,” Warner told reporters Wednesday, following a classified briefing for senators with members of the intelligence community.   


“I’d like to get as much of the content declassified as possible,” he added. “But I think there was a reason why when this brief was given on the House side, to the Energy and Commerce Committee, afterwards they voted 50 to nothing to move the legislation forward,” he added.


The Protecting Americans From Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act moved swiftly through the House. It advanced out of the House committee in a unanimous vote earlier this month just days after it was first introduced, and less than a week later it passed in a 352-65 vote on the floor.  


That vote took place after TikTok led a campaign urging users to call lawmakers to block the bill, calling it a “TikTok shutdown.”  


The bill is not moving as quickly in the Senate as it did in the House — and may face a tougher challenge in the Senate, where it will need to pass a 60-vote threshold.


Warner said he doesn’t have the “foggiest idea” when a vote may be held.  


“They moved obviously very aggressively and quickly in the House. I’m not sure the Senate has that same kind of timetable,” he said.  


Read more in a full report at


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