Republican Senators raise concerns over Oracle-TikTok deal

Republican Senators raise concerns over Oracle-TikTok deal
© Greg Nash

A group of Republican Senators led by Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioRubio blocks quick votes on stalemated defense bill Wisconsinites need infrastructure that is built to last  Republicans struggle to save funding for Trump's border wall MORE (Fla.) on Wednesday raised concerns about a proposed partnership between Oracle and TikTok.

In a letter to President TrumpDonald TrumpMedia giants side with Bannon on request to release Jan. 6 documents Cheney warns of consequences for Trump in dealings with Jan. 6 committee Jan. 6 panel recommends contempt charges for Trump DOJ official MORE, the lawmakers warned that a partnership where Oracle simply assumes a management role of the social media platform would not resolve the national security risks outlined in the executive order that has compelled the app's divestiture.

"The Executive order is a clear-eyed directive that highlights the data security, corporate espionage, and censorship hazards posed by TikTok, which is owned by the Chinese company ByteDance," Rubio and Sens. Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland TillisOvernight Defense & National Security — A new plan to treat Marines 'like human beings' Republicans press Milley over perceived progressive military agenda Gun control group alleges campaign finance violations in lawsuit against NRA MORE (R-N.C.), Roger WickerRoger Frederick WickerHillicon Valley — Chinese disinformation accounts removed GOP resistance to Biden FCC nominee could endanger board's Democratic majority Bottom line MORE (R-Miss.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Dan SullivanDaniel Scott SullivanGOP resistance to Biden FCC nominee could endanger board's Democratic majority Man charged with threatening Alaska senators pleads not guilty China conducts combat readiness drill after US congressional delegation arrives in Taiwan MORE (R-Alaska) and John CornynJohn CornynCongress's goal in December: Avoid shutdown and default Mental health: The power of connecting requires the power of investing Senators call for Smithsonian Latino, women's museums to be built on National Mall MORE (R-Texas) wrote.

ADVERTISEMENT

"As this deal appears to fall short of a full acquisition, serious questions remain with regard to Oracle’s role in TikTok’s U.S. operations, the type of technology Oracle will be providing ByteDance, and the question of what will happen to the crucial algorithms, which make the application function."

Oracle and TikTok submitted the proposed deal to the Treasury Department over the weekend.

Any deal involving the wildly popular short-form video app would require administration approval.

Rubio's opposition to the deal is significant, given he was one of the first lawmakers to call for a Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States review of TikTok.

Sens. Josh HawleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleyFacebook unblocks Rittenhouse searches GOP holds on Biden nominees set back gains for women in top positions Graham emerges as go-to ally for Biden's judicial picks MORE (R-Mo.) and Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenSenate parliamentarian looms over White House spending bill Democrats push tax credits to bolster clean energy Five reasons for concern about Democrats' drug price control plan MORE (D-Ore.) had previously raised similar concerns about the deal.

Details about the nature of the proposed partnership have not been made public, although reports have suggested that it would involve moving TikTok’s global headquarters to the U.S. while allowing ByteDance to remain a majority shareholder, with Oracle taking a minority stake.