Former President Donald Trump is too old for another term in the White House and should “hang up his hat & sail into the sunset,” tech billionaire Elon Musk tweeted on Monday, hitting back after Trump called Musk “just another bullshit artist” for supporting his political opponents in past elections and attempting to back out of his $44 billion deal to buy Twitter.
In a series of tweets Monday night, Tesla chief executive Musk said he does not hate Trump but does think it’s time for the former president to leave politics, “hang up his hat & sail into the sunset.”
Trump’s presidency was too dramatic, Musk said, asking whether the country really wanted a “bull in a china shop situation” every day.
Musk said Democrats should “call off the attack” on Trump and suggested they were priming him for another presidential bid by making it so that his only way to “survive” is by regaining the White House.
Musk’s comments come after Trump branded the billionaire “another bullshit artist” at a rally on Saturday.
Trump criticized Musk for trying to pull out of a deal to buy social media platform Twitter and said Musk has personally told him he voted for him in the past, disputing the billionaire’s claim he voted Republican—supporting Mayra Flores—for the first time in a special congressional election in Texas this June.
Musk contested Trump’s claim and responded to a tweet quoting the former president with two words: “not true.”
Trump fired back at Musk Tuesday evening on Truth Social, saying government subsidies he approved are responsible for Musk’s massive wealth and claiming the world’s richest man came to him promoting “driverless cars that crash” and “rocketships to nowhere.”
Musk also said Trump, who would be 82 at the end of a second term, is too old to seriously consider another run at the White House. That’s “too old to be chief executive of anything, let alone the United States of America,” Musk said. President Biden is even older than Trump and would be 86 at the end of a second term. Musk’s comments are in line with his previous critiques of gerontocracy—a state governed by older people—and America’s aging political leadership. Musk said there should be an upper age limit of 69 for anyone starting a presidential term.
What To Watch For
2024 Election. Trump, though campaigning and staying politically involved, hasn’t made it clear whether he plans to launch a third presidential bid. In recent months another Republican has emerged as a possible contender: Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. Musk, who has previously indicated support for DeSantis, said he would “easily win” against Biden in 2024. “He doesn’t even need to campaign.” Polling suggests nearly two-thirds of Democrat voters don’t want to see Biden on the presidential ballot in 2024, with a third of these citing age as the number one factor.
Musk told Twitter on Friday he is “terminating” his $44 billion deal to buy the company, claiming the platform has not provided enough information to verify its claims on fake and spam accounts. The head of Twitter’s board has said the company will take legal action to force Musk to stick to the terms he agreed to. Musk and Trump—who is banned from Twitter—have both heavily criticized the platform’s policies on censorship and actively push for a less regulated online soapbox.