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Home Biden Big Tech China recent Could China Use TikTok to Elect Biden?

Could China Use TikTok to Elect Biden?

In 2020, 3% of Americans got their news from TikTok. It’s now 14% or 1 in 7 people.

Among 18-29 year olds, 1 in 3 Americans get their news from TikTok. That’s up from less than 1 in 10 in 2020. Some of this is due to the app’s growth rate, but it’s also a strategy. It’s not just that TikTok is growing quickly, but today half of TikTok users say they get their news through it. That’s up from 1 in 5 in 2020. TikTok isn’t just growing, it’s growing its political influence.

When the House passed a bill forcing an end to Chinese Communist control over TikTok, the platform rallied its users, many of them underage, to pressure and even threaten Congress.

With 170 million active users in the United States, TikTok is one of the largest news platforms in the country and it’s under the control of Communist China. By 2021, most mainstream media organizations had jumped on to a platform that used to be known for short dance clips.

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence revealed that China had influenced the 2022 midterm elections using TikTok and warned that the Communist regime may “attempt to influence the U.S. elections in 2024”. Some have speculated that China used TikTok to help swing the 2022 elections, but its influence over the 2024 election will be much more powerful.

If TikTok’s influence continues to grow at its current rates, by 2026 no one in D.C. will touch it.

An effort to end China’s control over TikTok fell apart ahead of the 2022 midterms and now a similar effort is being attacked from all sides because China’s influence cuts across parties. There are Democrats and Republicans who have taken Chinese money and some members of both parties who oppose China are also considered potential threats by the ChiCom regime.

During the 2022 midterms, China used TikTok to target some elected officials from both parties.

While China has its own agenda, so do some of the top ESG firms who bought into its ByteDance partner, including BlackRock and Sequoia Capital, which have profited massively from Biden’s destructive ESG agenda that is feeding inflation and bankrupting America.

But those agendas are also interwoven with China’s growing influence on American business.

Sequoia has been under congressional scrutiny for its Chinese investments that may have helped the Chinese military, and the firm’s Michael Moritz directed millions into a Dem PAC alongside George Soros. The House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party had warned that BlackRock had invested $429 million into Chinese companies that “act directly against the interests of the United States.” BlackRock vets fill the ranks of the Biden government.

All of this is likely to come to a head in the 2024 election in which vast amounts of power and money will be at stake. And with the sharp growth in TikTok’s active users and their news consumption, China may finally be in a position to swing an American presidential election.

It had been estimated that Google’s biased algorithms may have moved millions of votes in the 2020 election, but the biases in TikTok’s algorithms could move millions more votes, especially among the younger voters who use it heavily, under the direction of an enemy nation.

And with 170 million users, half of whom get their news from TikTok, those videos help shape the worldviews of 85 million Americans.

TikTok’s finely turned algorithm reportedly uses all the data that the app collects about users, from where they are to which phones they use, learning which videos they watch and which they ignore, and how much of them they watch, to zero in on their worldviews and build a rapid profile, and begin recommending videos within 15 minutes that will get inside their heads.

Given that information, it becomes all too easy for the algorithm to manipulate users.

This manipulation can be gross, like pushing left-learning or pro-Biden content to independent and swing voters, but it can also be subtle, like interfering in primaries by promoting content in favor of or against one politician, or pushing ‘doomer’ content that discourages one side, like conservatives, from voting. Such methods have already been experimented with on other platforms, but TikTok’s secretive foreign operation makes it particularly impermeable.

If China were to interfere in the 2024 election, how would it do it?

Chinese Communist election interference on behalf of Trudeau and against the political candidates whom the regime opposed provides us with a partial real world blueprint. Leaks from the Canadian Security Intelligence Service revealed how the CCP and its agents used straw campaign donors, hired Chinese volunteers and rallied local groups to rig elections.

But it’s in Taiwan’s election where China used everything from fake polls to crypto bribes to deepfake videos that we can see the real danger. TikTok was flooded with videos smearing the anti-Communist frontrunner, while promoting pro-PRC candidates. One Chinese Communist influence operation used fake personas to accuse the pro- independence party of causing “an egg shortage and the alleged poisoning of kindergarten students.”

China, which is trying to catch up to America in AI, also used AI to produce a 300-page book and then made that into the basis for AI generated videos targeting Taiwan’s former president. The PRC is already deploying AI campaigns in America and TikTok provides it with the perfect platform. But TikTok’s algorithm also ensures that China won’t have to rely too heavily on AI as human influencers will rush to produce content that is rewarded by the algorithm.

TikTok provides China with a direct pipeline into half the country with no limitations.

What will the Communist regime do with that power? Much as in Canada, where Xi decided to back the leftist candidate, the CCP will likely choose to throw its covert support to Biden. And the best way to tell whom China supports may be to follow the TikTok trends.

Communist China has the ability to use TikTok to elect Biden. The only question is will it?

As long as TikTok remains under China’s control, our elections can never be safe.

Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Thank you for reading.


  1. Anonymous5/4/24

    But...Orange Man is bad. And on a more serious note, we should expect the CCP to really play that up on TikTok. Poison the well...works every time with an ignorant electorate.


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