Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, has pledged his political support to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. During a news conference in Madeira Beach, Florida, DeSantis, a Republican stated that he is focused on 2022. “But, in the case of Elon Musk, I’d say, “I welcome support from African Americans.” I’m not sure what to say “He went on to say.
DeSantis was echoing the April language of Black conservatives who praised Musk’s planned takeover of Twitter. Musk, a white man, was born in Pretoria, South Africa, and lived there until he was 17 years old, when he moved to Canada, where his mother comes from. According to a tweet made early Wednesday morning by Musk, he’s officially a Texas voter, having just voted for Republican Mayra Flores in a special election for a US House seat.
Conservatives in Congress frequently accuse Twitter of being biassed toward the left, notably after the company deplatformed former President Donald Trump for inciting the attack on the Capitol on January 6, 2021. Musk has claimed that under his leadership, the social media behemoth will unleash free expression.
After a Twitter user named Tesla Owners Silicon Valley asked him who he was “leaning towards” voting for as president in 2024, Musk, the world’s richest man, indicated early Wednesday that he’d likely support DeSantis.
He went on to say that he backed Democratic candidate Andrew Yang in the 2020 race, but that DeSantis “had a greater chance of winning” in 2024.
Musk announced last month that he would vote Republican in the upcoming election, despite previously voting for Democrats. He identified as a “moderate” who is neither a Republican nor a Democrat.
In reaction to the back-and-forth between Musk and DeSantis, Florida Democratic Party spokesman Travis Reuther accused DeSantis of “selling himself to every out-of-state billionaire he can find.” According to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, DeSantis’ governorship campaign has received funding from 42 billionaires.
DeSantis has stated that he is solely focused on his 2022 campaign and has not stated that he will run for president. When asked about it, he tends to brush it aside.
He is expected to run because he has raised $124 million in campaign funds, according to political insiders. He’s also not afraid to get involved in high-profile fights against the Biden administration. Many conservatives see DeSantis as having policies similar to those of Trump, but without the legal and political baggage that comes with the former president.
DeSantis trounced Trump in a straw poll of self-identified conservative conference-goers who were asked who they’d prefer to be the 2024 presidential nominee earlier this month at the Western Conservative Summit.
According to Rolling Stone, Trump is considering a presidential candidacy as early as July 4 this year, and may do so in Florida to show DeSantis “who the boss is.”