April 25, 2024

Biden plans to keep using TikTok until the election or longer

Despite signing a bill to ban TikTok within a year unless its Chinese parent ByteDance sells it to an American-owned company, President Joe Biden's campaign said he plans to keep using the platform through the election and afterward.

“A fragmented media environment requires us to show up and meet voters where they are — and that includes online,” a Biden campaign official told NBC News. “TikTok is one of many places we’re making sure our content is being seen by voters.”

The campaign said it plans to use “every tool we have to reach young voters where they are” and that it will keep using “enhanced security measures.”

Before the bill was passed by Congress, the campaign declined to answer whether Biden planned to keep using the platform.

Pressing his advantage

The campaign only established a TikTok account in February after saying it would not use it for re-election efforts.

The account, @bidenhq, has 120 videos and over 300,000 followers.

Biden's election rival, former President Donald Trump, is not on TikTok.

The earliest a TikTok ban could be implemented is January, but Biden has said he suspects there will be legal action against the legislation that could delay a ban further.

The question

While it's a legitimate question why Biden would want to use a social media platform he has consented to ban if conditions aren't met, it's not currently illegal to do so.

There has been a concerted effort to go after the young vote in 2024, and TikTok caters to that age group better than any other platform other than maybe Instagram.

On the other hand, Biden's young voters might not be happy with him banning their favorite site.

Biden's campaign said he isn't worried about the prospect of turning off those voters.

“Like he did in 2020, Joe Biden will beat Trump with the backing of young voters who know he’s kept his promises and is committed to delivering on the issues that matter most to them: to fight climate change, reform gun laws, reduce student loans, and build a country that moves us forward, not backward,” a Biden campaign official said.

“Reducing young people’s vote down to the use of a social media app is unserious, inaccurate, and insulting: Election after election, young people continue to show us they understand the stakes of this moment and will vote like their futures depend on it — because they do,” he added.

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