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TikTok could take legal action against Trump administration next week

The tensions between the Trump administration and the short video app TikTok continue to grow following the President’s executive order last week. TikTok reportedly intends to bring legal action against the administration as early as next week over the order, which would ban companies in the U.S. from doing business with the app’s parent company ByteDance.

As reported by NPR, TikTok may be intending to bring legal actions against the administration as early as Tuesday. A source involved in the suit told NPR that the company intends to file in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California, which is where TikTok’s U.S. operations are based.

It will reportedly argue that the order is unconstitutional because the company was not given a chance to respond, and it will challenge the assertion that the app represents a threat to U.S. national security.

“It’s based on pure speculation and conjecture,” the source said to NPR. “The order has no findings of fact, just reiterates rhetoric about China that has been kicking around.”

The order states that the app will be effectively banned from the U.S. within 45 days unless it is bought out entirely by a U.S. company. Tech giant Microsoft has been in talks to buy the app, but it’s not certain if this deal will be approved before the 45-day limit expires.

The executive order has been the subject of considerable speculation and debate, with many experts doubtful as to whether it is legal or enforceable. TikTok said in a statement on Friday that it would be pursuing legal action against the order, saying that the order “was issued without any due process.” The company also criticized the professionalism of the administration, saying it “paid no attention to facts, dictated terms of an agreement without going through standard legal processes, and tried to insert itself into negotiations between private businesses.”

The TikTok issue has also been causing tensions within the White House, according to the Washington Post. A source present at a meeting between President Trump, trade adviser Peter Navarro, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, and others told the Post that the meeting devolved into a “knockdown, drag-out” brawl with fierce disagreements over whether TikTok should be sold to a U.S. company such as Microsoft or whether the app should be banned entirely.

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Georgina Torbet
Georgina is the Digital Trends space writer, covering human space exploration, planetary science, and cosmology. She…
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