Tesla CEO Elon Musk argues with Bernie Sanders on Twitter about tax coverage

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) greets reporters as he involves the vote within the U.S. Capitol in Washington on November 1, 2021.

Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk argued on Twitter with Senator Bernie Sanders over tax coverage this weekend and tried once more on Monday morning to impress him.

In line with his web site, the impartial senator (who typically meets with Democrats) is a proponent of changing the U.S. power system to renewable power by donating $ 200 billion to a inexperienced local weather fund and different environmentally-friendly measures that will do Tesla good .

However he is additionally a proponent of tax hikes for the super-rich, as is Oregon Democratic Senator Ron Wyden, whom Musk pinned in an analogous trade on Twitter in early November. Musk, who at present has the very best web value on the earth, firmly rejects a so-called “billionaire revenue tax”.

Final week, Musk offered roughly $ 6.9 billion value of shares. (As of Monday morning, Musk nonetheless holds greater than 166 million shares within the firm.) Prior to now few weeks, gross sales by Musk and different insiders have put Tesla shares below stress. Final week, Tesla inventory was down 15.4%, marking the corporate’s worst one-week efficiency in 20 months and its worst non-declining week within the first quarter of 2020 because the coronavirus pandemic rocked markets. Tesla misplaced one other 3% in late-day buying and selling on Monday.

As his sell-off continues, Musk faces a doubtlessly huge tax invoice. Nevertheless, as ProPublica reported, Musk beforehand paid an actual tax fee of three.27%, or $ 455 million, on an asset progress of $ 13.9 billion. Musk, who had precise taxable revenue of $ 1.52 billion throughout the five-year interval, didn’t pay federal revenue taxes in 2018, in accordance with ProPublica.

On Twitter, Sanders has greater than 15 million followers and Musk has 63.8 million followers.

The spit begins

On Saturday, the 80-year-old Senator from Vermont wrote in a tweet: “We should demand that the extraordinarily wealthy pay their justifiable share. Interval.”

Musk replied the subsequent day with: “I hold forgetting that you’re nonetheless alive.” Musk additionally requested Sanders on Sunday, “Ought to I promote extra shares, Bernie? Simply say the phrase.” Then the CEO berated the Senator: “Bernie is a taker, not a doer.”

Musk tried once more to rent Sanders on Monday.

He requested, “Okay, how a lot do you suppose is truthful? Does 53% appear affordable?”

When Sanders did not reply, a Musk fan famous that the Senator typically does not reply to followers on Twitter. Musk requested, “How do we all know he wasn’t kidnapped by aliens !?” Musk continued to remain open on Twitter, discussing his tax coverage preferences with followers and followers, together with promoters of Bitcoin and Tesla.

In his tweet trade, Musk revealed that he would assist an inheritance tax and taxes on what he referred to as extravagant consumption.

The CEO additionally stated he at present owns round 20% of Tesla’s shares.

Senator Sanders and Tesla didn’t instantly reply to requests for remark.

In 2020, Musk launched its California mansions whereas battling state well being officers over Covid-19 restrictions affecting Tesla’s Fremont manufacturing unit. He then moved to Austin, Texas, close to the positioning of a brand new Tesla manufacturing unit that’s below development.

That yr, Tesla additionally moved its headquarters from Palo Alto, California to Austin, Texas.

Shifting from California, with the very best state revenue tax within the nation, to Texas, which has no state revenue tax, might save Musk billions of {dollars} based mostly on his compensation package deal granted in 2018.

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