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Sen. Rand Paul Clashes with Fox News Host Over Bill That Could Ban TikTok in the U.S. (VIDEO)

'You cannot take people’s property without due process'

Sen. Rand Paul Clashes with Fox News Host Over Bill That Could Ban TikTok in the U.S. (VIDEO)

Sen. Rand Paul clashed with Fox News host Brian Kilmeade on Thursday over a bill that could ban TikTok in the United States.

The bill, which the Senate is now considering, would require TikTok’s China-based parent company, ByteDance, to divest itself from the platform or be removed from U.S.-based hosting and app stores.

Appearing on "Fox & Friends," shortly after the House passed the bill, the Kentucky senator was asked by Kilmeade if countries “like Russia, China, North Korea and Iran” should be able to own influential social media platforms.

"The company’s owned 60% by international investors, 20% by the two Chinese software engineers who developed it, the entrepreneurs who began the business, and 20% by their employees, 7,000 of whom are American," Sen. Paul replied. "It’s a very diverse ownership. It’s not owned by the Chinese government."

The senator continued, "In fact, on TikTok’s board there are no Chinese nationals that control that are associated with the government at all. They are CEOs from Singapore. So this is international corporation and like every other international corporation they deserve their day in court. You can’t just take their property."

“Who owns that company? ByteDance. ByteDance is owned by China,” Kilmeade said.

“No. It’s not. See, that’s a lie,” Paul shot back.

The senator then accused Kilmeade of "defaming" TikTok.

“Who controls the algorithm? It’s not nonprofits. Who owns the algorithm!?” Kilmeade demanded.

“TikTok owns its own algorithm, and it’s not in China,” Paul replied.

The increasingly frustrated Kilmeade demanded again, “Who owns ByteDance? The Chinese government.”

“You just told a lie. You can’t say something on TV something that’s a lie by a company. That is an out and out lie and it is provably false,” Paul asserted.

Kilmeade asked, “What is a lie?”

“They are not owned by the Chinese government! TikTok is owned privately,” Paul said, once again.

“ByteDance controls the algorithm. That’s all that matters!” Kilmeade declared.

The fiery interview concluded with Kilmeade accusing Paul of being “comfortable with TikTok influencing America.”

“I’m comfortable with the Constitution. You cannot take people’s property without due process,” Paul said. “If you believe there’s a national exemption to the Constitution then you believe that Fox News could be shut down, that Twitter could be shut down. That’s a terrible thing to believe.”

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