Tesla CEO Elon Musk speaks at an event in Hawthorne, California. Reuters
Elon Musk has predicted a “dirty tricks campaign” from Democrats and their allies after revealing that he plans to switch his vote in US elections to the Republican Party.
The Tesla and SpaceX boss said on Monday that he had voted “overwhelmingly” for Democrats in the past but would break the habit in at least one upcoming election due to opposition to President Joe Biden.
On Wednesday, he tweeted: “In the past I voted Democrat, because they were (mostly) the kindness party. But they have become the party of division and hate, so I can no longer support them and will vote Republican.
“Now, watch their dirty tricks campaign against me unfold...” He concluded with a popcorn emoji.
It comes as Mr Musk, who is the richest person on Earth with a net worth of $218 billion (£176 billion) according to Forbes, attempts to use his fortune to take control of Twitter, which he has branded “very far left”.
The tycoon has long shied away from partisan affiliation, often describing himself as a centrist who leans liberal on social issues and conservative on economic issues.
However, he has taken exception to Mr Biden’s administration, which he describes as rudderless and “captured” by trade unions, and to Democrats’ renewed focus on labour issues and economic inequality
Meanwhile, as the rising value of Tesla stock propelled Mr Musk up the Forbes Rich List, Democrats have increasingly criticised him and his businesses, which face accusations of union-busting, sexual harassment, and racial discrimination.
Former presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren branded his Twitter takeover as “dangerous for our democracy”, following a long history of public spats with Mr Musk over her plan to break up big tech companies.
Last week Mr Musk said he would end Twitter’s ban on Donald Trump if he gets control of the company, despite the former president’s repeated use of the social network to praise and galvanise violent extremist groups.
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Musk's fortune rose by $6.07 billion on Friday, Bloomberg News said, following a 10.8% jump in the electric carmaker's stock. Tesla's shares have surged 500% over the past year as the company increased sales of its Model 3 sedan.
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