(BOISE) – Attorney General Raúl Labrador today announced that Idaho has signed onto an amicus brief spearheaded by Virginia Attorney General Miyares, joined by 17 other states, supporting Montana’s legislation that would prohibit the app in the state unless it separates from its parent Chinese company, ByteDance.

Montana’s legislation is nearly identical to the federal legislation that has received bipartisan support from both Speaker Johnson and President Biden. On March 7th, the federal legislation passed 50-0 out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

“The tentacles of the Chinese Communist Party are wrapped around TikTok,” said Attorney General Labrador. “We can’t ignore the existential threat that poses to our national security and the well-being of so many users – many of them teens.  TikTok has 150 million users here in the United States alone and the exposure that it creates is troubling.”

The purpose of the bill is not to ban TikTok nor is it aimed at any particular content on TikTok, but rather to protect citizens and their data by requiring the app to divest from its Chinese parent, ByteDance. 

The attorneys general highlight that TikTok was the second most downloaded mobile application worldwide last year, with 654 million downloads. The United States has the world’s largest TikTok audience, with 150 million users, and is one of the top online platforms for U.S. teens ages 13 to 17. The brief notes that TikTok, like many other social media sites, is addictive and social media addiction has been traced to higher odds of depression and increased anxiety. It also lays out TikTok’s extensive connections to the Chinese government.

The following states also signed onto Virginia’s brief: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, and Utah.