United States Senator Bernie Sanders is still berating Tesla CEO Elon Musk because of his massive net worth.
As the CEO and majority shareholder of Tesla, Musk has accumulated a significant net worth since the beginning of 2020. Tesla stock soared to all-time highs in 2020, contributing a substantial sum to Musk’s personal net worth. This fact has inspired Senator Sanders to cast several messages toward Musk, who became the richest person in the world for the first time earlier this year.
Sanders’ first projection of discontent came in August 2020, when the Senator proposed the “Make Billionaires Pay Act.” The bill would require billionaires to pay a one-time, 60% tax on any wealth gains made between March 18th, 2020, and January 1st, 2021. The money made from imposing the tax on some of the nation’s wealthiest people would be used to pay out-of-pocket-healthcare expenses for Americans. The bill was never passed.
Since then, Sanders has made several comments regarding Musk’s growing net worth, which have hinted toward higher taxes against those who have made substantial monetary gains since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s CEO, was also a subject of Sanders’ criticism.
Musk recently replied to a CleanTechnica Tweet that criticized attacks on Musk’s wealth, especially as most of his time goes into creating sustainable transportation and energy options and fighting the global climate crisis.
I am accumulating resources to help make life multiplanetary & extend the light of consciousness to the stars
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) March 21, 2021
Sanders responded, claiming Musk should “focus on Earth” while calling the inequality of America “obscene and a threat to our society.” Sanders currently identifies with the Independent political party and is also associated with the Progressive party. He has been extremely vocal regarding economic equality and making the rich “pay their fair share.” Sanders has run for president on several occasions but has never been elected as the representative for the Democratic candidate. In 2016, he lost to Hilary Clinton, and in 2020, Sanders suspended his campaign and endorsed current President Joe Biden.
Musk’s net worth currently stands at $170.2 billion, according to Forbes. Since the market closed on Friday, Musk’s net worth has increased by $7.7 billion. He is currently the second-richest person on Earth, trailing Jeff Bezos.