What’s Going on Between Trump Musk?
The back-and-forth between Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO Elon Musk and President-elect Donald Trump has taken a surprising new turn on Wednesday, as the newest chapter in the Trump Musk saga may be all about cooperation.
Trump Musk (as I will refer to the dynamic from here on in) has entered uncharted territory, with Elon Musk being named as a strategic adviser to the future president. This could have an effect on TSLA stock.
Along with Travis Kalanick, the CEO of Uber Technologies Inc., Musk will “meet with the president frequently” and offer knowledge and experience to Trump as part of a his Strategic and Policy Forum, said Trump officials. (Source: “Elon Musk and the chief executive of Uber are now advising Donald Trump,” The Washington Post, December 14, 2016.)
“He doesn’t seem to have the sort of character that reflects well on the United States,” Musk told CNBC in November.
Of course, Elon Musk is hardly alone in his admonishment against a Trump presidency, especially in the tech world. Trump is meeting with several other tech bigwigs on Wednesday who were also quite outspoken against the president-elect.
But perhaps the biggest source of contention between Trump Musk is the issue of climate change. Musk is a firm believer that humans are impacting the climate in serious and, at times, devastating ways. He has dedicated much of his career to combating these effects through his solar panel company SolarCity Corp (NASDAQ:SCTY) and his Tesla electric vehicles.
Trump, on the other hand, feels that the jury is still out on human-induced climate change. Trump has previously called the whole thing a hoax perpetuated by China but, in recent weeks, has seemed to change his tune, meeting with notable environmental advocates Al Gore and Leonardo DiCaprio. Donald Trump’s daughter and close confidant, Ivanka Trump, is also a proponent of the climate change issue. (Source: “Trump: ‘Nobody really knows’ if climate change is real,” CNN, December 12, 2016.)
How the Trump Musk relationship evolves over time will certainly be interesting to watch. And how TSLA stock fares as a result, even more so.