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Harris won’t say why Biden campaign is on TikTok despite security concerns

ABC News

In a new interview with ABC News, Vice President Kamala Harris deflected on why President Joe Biden’s campaign has a TikTok account and encourages Americans to follow it given the White House’s security concerns with the platform — and support for legislation that could lead to it being banned in the U.S. if its Chinese owner doesn’t sell.

“So, let’s start with this: We do not intend to ban TikTok,” Harris told ABC News’ Senior Congressional Correspondent Rachel Scott on “This Week.”

“That is not at all the goal or the purpose of this conversation,” Harris said. “We need to deal with the owner and we have national security concerns about the owner of TikTok, but we have no intention to ban TikTok.”

The vice president went on to say there are “very important” benefits to the platform, including serving as an income generator for many users and “allowing people to share information in a free way.”

The Biden campaign last month joined TikTok as part of an effort to get their message to reach more voters — including younger voters — and directed Americans to follow their account.

Several videos of both Biden and Harris have been posted on their TikTok account, despite the fact that the administration has repeatedly expressed concerns with the app’s China-based owner, ByteDance.

Biden previously signed legislation banning TikTok from federal government devices and expressed support for the current bill in Congress that seeks to force the sale of TikTok from its parent company.

The White House told ABC News last week that it wants ByteDance to divest.

TIkTok maintains that worries over data and other security issues are unfounded. The platform also cites the fact that U.S. user data is held on servers in America.

Harris was pressed by Scott in her ABC News interview about continuing to campaign through TikTok in light of “those national security concerns that you’re voicing.”

“Well, we’ll address that when we come to it,” Harris said. “But right now we are concerned about the owner of TikTok and the national security implications.”

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