Most Georgia lawmakers back U.S. House crackdown on TikTok

House passes bill to require social media company to sever ties with China or face ban

WASHINGTON — All but two of Georgia’s 14 members in the U.S. House supported legislation that could lead to TikTok going dark in the U.S.

That was despite a heavy lobbying campaign from the owners of the popular video-based social media app, as well as users and creators who flooded lawmakers’ phone lines.

“TikTok is a national security threat,” Rep. Buddy Carter, R-St. Simons Island, posted on social media after the vote.

He pointed out that TikTok has ties to the Chinese Communist Party and said it should separate itself from parent company ByteDance if it wants to remain active in the U.S.

“The choice is yours,” Carter wrote.

The House voted overwhelmingly Wednesday in favor of the bill, which would require ByteDance to sell off its stake in TikTok to avoid a complete ban. Prior to the vote, lawmakers received classified briefings alleging national security concerns with the app, including that the Chinese government could use it to control or manipulate U.S. citizens’ phones or data.

The final vote was 352-65. The only members of Georgia’s delegation who opposed the bill were Reps. Nikema Williams, a liberal Democrat from Atlanta, and Marjorie Taylor Greene, a hard-right conservative from Rome.

During debate on the measure, Greene said that banning TikTok was the wrong approach to combating the growing influence of China. She also said she and many other Americans don’t trust that the U.S. government has good intentions in its proposed ban of the app and said it was violating free speech protections.

“This is a Pandora’s box,” she said. “What’s to stop Congress or the United States government in the future from forcing the sale of another social media company, claiming that it’s protecting Americans’ data from foreign adversaries?”

Williams said targeting just TikTok was unfair to the millions of people who use it daily when the problem is much more universal.

“I voted no on this legislation because it is only a piecemeal approach to solving a serious, industry-wide concern about protecting the personal data of social media users,” she said in a statement. “Congress must pass comprehensive legislation to protect every user on every social platform, including TikTok.”

The bill now goes to the Senate, where it’s unclear whether it will be brought to the floor for a vote. Senate Leader Chuck Schumer issued a noncommittal statement, promising only that he would review the measure.



U.S. Rep. Rick Allen, R-Augusta

U.S. Rep. Sanford Bishop, D-Albany

U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter, R-St. Simons Island

U.S. Rep. Andrew Clyde, R-Athens

U.S. Rep. Mike Collins, R-Jackson

U.S. Rep. Drew Ferguson, R-The Rock

U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Lithonia

U.S. Rep. Barry Loudermilk, R-Cassville

U.S. Rep. Lucy McBath, D-Marietta

U.S. Rep. Rich McCormick, R-Suwanee

U.S. Rep. Austin Scott, R-Tifton

U.S. Rep. David Scott, D-Atlanta


U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Rome

U.S. Rep. Nikema Williams, D-Atlanta