The CEO of Tesla has become one of the most influential voices in the world.
Elon Musk confirms that he is atypical.
He simply plays in a different court than his CEO peers. He is in a league of his own.
Recently, the billionaire entrepreneur decided to assert his political opinions even though tradition has always wanted CEOs to remain neutral to avoid angering some of their customers and alienating politicians of one party, knowing that in the event of political change their companies could pay dearly.
Musk seems to scoff at these traditions. He even delights in walking on them. After violently criticizing President Joe Biden and the Democrats, he said he will vote Republican in the midterm elections.
He has just taken a new step in his involvement in politics. The tech tycoon has for the first time endorsed a candidate running for an office. This is Rick Caruso, who is running for mayor of Los Angeles, a city where Musk lived until his departure for Texas last year.
Caruso Is ‘Awesome’
“Los Angeles is fortunate to have someone like Rick Caruso running for mayor,” Musk told to his more than 96.4 million followers on Twitter on June 3. “He’s awesome.”
Los Angeles residents vote Tuesday, June 7 for their new mayor. The two main candidates are Rick Caruso, a former Republican billionaire, and Karen Bass, a prominent Democratic congresswoman.
Caruso is a real estate mogul who registered as a Democrat this year after being a donor to Republicans and their causes for most of his career. He is currently the frontrunner, taking advantage of the multiple crises in Los Angeles, a Democratic stronghold. Crimes and gun violence are on the rise, the homeless crisis has worsened (as it has in many big cities). Caruso has already spent just over $25 million of his personal fortune on this campaign.
Bass was on Joe Biden’s short-list of running mates. She came from the ranks of community organizing in South Los Angeles. But the wind is not currently blowing in the direction of the politicians in power.
“It is rare for me to endorse political candidates,” Musk explained. “My political leanings are moderate, so neither fully Republican nor Democrat, which I am confident is the case for most Americans.”
“Executive competence is super underrated in politics – we should care about that a lot more!”
Aware that this explanation alone is not enough to justify why he brings his name and his influence to a candidate, the richest man in the world insisted that Caruso is “competent.”
“Yes, I am endorsing a political candidate because he is competent!” Musk repeated.
Musk Subtly Criticizes Trump
Musk’s endorsement got a lot of reaction from Twitter users. There are those who blame him for supporting another billionaire businessman who doesn’t give a damn about the homeless.
“Los Angeles, you can elect a progressive Black woman for mayor—not someone who will work for the richest of the rich,” commented former Ohio State Senator Nina Turner.
“My next vehicle will be electric. But not a Tesla!” commented another Twitter user.
“Am I the only one seeing a HUGE conflict of interest in being mayor AND CEO and billionaire of a real estate company? Because those 2 things clash…A LOT,” another tweet reads.
Other Twitter users call on Musk to run for “mayor” of Texas. They even organized a poll on Twitter about it. The comment seems to be a joke or the user wanted to talk about the governor of Texas.
“Lol never heard of mayor of Texas 🤣🤣,” a user responded.
These last comments show the surprise caused by Musk’s endorsement. But Musk’s involvement in politics is hardly a surprise.
The mogul has been preparing minds for it for a few weeks now. Democrats believe he rallied to the Republicans because he continues to criticize the Biden administration and Liberals.
Republicans applaud Musk but seem to ignore further comments from the Tesla CEO. The latter indeed repeats that ex-president Donald Trump, the hero of the extremists of the party, is too divisive as a candidate for the presidential election of 2024.
Musk has just repeated a second angle of attack which targets Trump without naming him: he recommends that we stop candidates from running for president once they reach 70 years old.
“Open primaries sound like a good way to move candidates to be more centrist,” Musk wrote on June 3. “Term limits help with the gerontocracy problem, but, frankly, there should be a max age beyond which you can’t run (maybe 70?), just like there are min ages for house, senate & president.”
“70 is currently the age when you receive maximum social security benefits. In other words, that’s when the govt concludes that you can’t hold a job!!”
Trump is 75 as of time of writing. He is soon to be 76 and will be 78 in November 2024.