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Trump says banning TikTok would make Facebook — an 'enemy of the people' — stronger

Donald Trump (left) and the Facebook logo on mobile (right).
Donald Trump said Facebook was an "enemy of the people."Chip Somodevilla, NurPhoto/Getty Images
  • Donald Trump is repeating his defense of TikTok, calling Facebook the real "enemy."

  • Congress is considering a bill that would ban TikTok because of concerns over national security.

  • Trump has a long-running beef with Facebook and its founder Mark Zuckerberg.

Donald Trump is doubling down on his new pro-TikTok stance, saying Facebook is the true "enemy."

Trump told CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Monday morning: "There's a lot of good and there's a lot of bad with TikTok. But the thing I don't like is that without TikTok, you can make Facebook bigger. And I consider Facebook to be an enemy of the people."

While president, Trump pushed for a TikTok ban unless it sold to new US owners, but ultimately backed off.

"Frankly, there are a lot of people on TikTok that love it," he said in Monday's interview. "There are a lot of young kids on TikTok who will go crazy without it. There are a lot of users."

Trump made similar comments on Truth Social last week, writing that if the popular social-media app were banned in the US, "Facebook and Zuckerschmuck will double their business."

Trump has tussled with Mark Zuckerberg, previously calling the Facebook founder a "criminal" and a "weirdo" and accusing him of changing the course of the 2020 election.

Congress is weighing a proposed bipartisan bill that would ban the app in the US if its Chinese owner, ByteDance, doesn't sell its US operations to a non-Chinese company.

The bill's supporters worry that the Chinese government could force ByteDance to turn over its data on Americans.

Some have speculated that Trump's flip-flop could be related to his meeting with the billionaire Jeff Yass, who's both a prominent Republican donor and a major TikTok investor.

The stakes of banning TikTok are high. Outlawing the app could turn off young voters during a crucial election year, and more and more people get their news from TikTok instead of traditional media outlets.

Many of those users have already protested to Congress, flooding their representatives' phone lines with phone calls urging them to reconsider. But the move appears to have backfired; a House panel voted in a rare bipartisan unanimous vote to move the bill forward.

Read the original article on Business Insider