White House visitor logs show regular visits by TikTok lobbyists

 April 21, 2023

The Chinese social media platform TikTok has long been the focus of suspicion, with conservatives complaining that it collects private data and promotes harmful content.

However, a new report revealed that paid lobbyists for TikTok and its parent company ByteDance have been regular White House guests.

Over 40 visits within the last year

According to The Washington Free Beacon, executives of a lobbying firm hired by TikTok visited the White House at least 40 times over the past year.

One of them was former Louisiana Democratic Sen. John Breaux, who now works as a lobbyist for Crossroads Strategies.

The Beacon cited White House visitor logs as showing that Breaux visited the executive mansion at least three times last year.

Other TikTok-connect lobbyists to stop by the White House include fellow Crossroads Strategies employee Stephanie Leger Short. She attended a meeting with White House adviser Mitch Landrieu on June 23.

China expert says Biden campaign will rely heavily on TikTok

Michael Sobolik is a China expert at the American Foreign Policy Council, and he suggested that there are important political factors which influence how Democrats regard TikTok.

"If administration officials appear highly susceptible to TikTok's lobbying efforts, it's probably because they're highly dependent on the app for political reasons," Sobolik was quoted as telling the Beacon.

"The Biden administration claims to be serious about TikTok, but the facts suggest otherwise," he insisted, adding, "Democratic operatives are already planning to push Biden's reelection agenda on the Chinese-controlled app."

Brendan Carr heads the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and he told lawmakers last month that TikTok represents a national security threat.

FCC head says TikTok targets "politicians here for divisive content"

"Look, I think the evidence we have now is crystal clear," Fox News quoted Carr telling as "CBS Mornings" after he spoke to members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

"For years TikTok represented that very little data, if any, goes back to Beijing, and there was a blockbuster story over the summer that got internal communications that said, no, quote, 'everything is seen in China,'" he said.

"There was a story that they were using the app TikTok to surreptitiously surveil the locations of specific Americans. They denied it. Later, internal emails came out that said, ‘No, we’re doing it,’…" Carr explained.

"Then we have our recent midterm elections, the CCP state media set up TikTok accounts to target politicians here for divisive content. So I think we have a lot of evidence of the risk," he added.

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