Donald Trump versus Elon Musk.
It’s a dream fight that will give pundits a lot to say in the coming weeks and months: Former Most Influential Man on Twitter vs. New Influential Man on Twitter.
The rivalry between the billionaire real estate developer and the billionaire tech tycoon has begun. And it is the former Republican president who has just started the hostilities as Musk’s influence continues to grow, which begins to make him a threat.
Musk has more than 100.7 million Twitter followers as of this writing, giving him a huge platform to sway public opinion. The chief executive officer of Tesla ( (TSLA) – Get Tesla Inc. report) has also recently assumed his conversion from a Democratic voter to a Republican voter. Musk recently announced to his millions of votes fans that he was going to Republican for the first time this year.
Musk Is Leaning Towards DeSantis
“I voted for Maya Flores – First time I ever voted Republican,” the charismatic and whimsical mogul, who lives in Texas since 2021, wrote on June 15. He then predicted a Republican wave in the midterm elections.
“Massive red wave in 2022.”
Also on June 15, Musk revealed he would vote for Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis in the 2024 presidential election.
DeSantis is seen by many commentators as a strong contender for the Republican nomination, making him one of Trump’s biggest threats.
The world’s richest man has also previously said he would vote for neither Trump nor current Democratic President Joe Biden if the two were candidates again in 2024. Musk said he found Trump too divisive and pleaded for a limitation of the age at which one can stand for election in order to automatically eliminate Biden and Trump.
Biden will turn 80 in November. He will be 82 at the time of the election in 2024. Donald Trump turned 76 in June. The former president will be over 78 when the next White House election comes around.
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Musk is 51 and can’t run for president because he was not born on American soil, one of the criteria for being an eligible candidate.
Musk Is a ‘Bullshit Artist’
But, on June 21, in an interview with Bloomberg, Musk was asked if he would support Trump in 2024: “I’m undecided at this point on that election,” the billionaire said, but he added that he will commit $20 million to $25 million to support his chosen container.
“Elon, Elon is not going to buy Twitter,” Trump said on July 9 at a rally in Anchorage, Alaska. “Where did you hear that before? From me.”
And then he went on the attack.
“You know, he said the other day ‘Oh, I’ve never voted for a Republican’. I said I didn’t know that. He told me he voted for me. So he’s another bullshit artist.”
The former president, who also has a style as abrasive as Musk, was then quick to comment on Musk’s turpitudes with Twitter.
“He’s not going to buy it. Although he might later who the hell knows what’s gonna happen. He’s got a pretty rotten contract. I looked at his contract, not a good contract.”
The knives are out. So forget the fact that Musk had pledged to reinstate the former president’s account on Twitter if he managed to take control of the microblogging website, considered the de facto Times Square of our time.
As a reminder, Trump was permanently banned from Twitter after the events of Jan. 6, 2021. And Musk, on July 8, withdrew his offer to acquire Twitter ( (TWTR) – Get Twitter Inc. report) for $44 billion because the company, in his view, does not reveal everything about the true number of fake accounts or spam bots present on the platform.
Musk has yet to respond to this unexpected attack from Trump. But it will be interesting to see how the billionaire who wants to establish himself as a kingmaker in the Republican Party will react.