Sen. Warner to Newsmax: Elon Musk Depends on China Communists' 'Largesse' (Newsmax/"The Record with Greta Van Susteren")
By Sandy Fitzgerald | Thursday, 03 November 2022 01:32 PM EDT
Twitter's new owner Elon Musk is an "extraordinarily bright guy" with tremendous business acumen, but he's also "totally dependent on the largesse of the Chinese Communist Party" because of his needs for his Tesla electric car manufacturing, Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Mark Warner tells Newsmax.
"I don't care what Musk does with [Former President Donald] Trump on Twitter, but what annoys me is Elon Musk is always criticizing the American government and American regulators," the Virginia Democrat said on Newsmax's "The Record with Greta Van Susteren" Wednesday night. "Yet when you look at his comments about the Chinese Communist Party regulators, this guy sucks up to that administration and to that regime in ways that I really question."
Warner said that he was one of Musk's "biggest advocates" when he was starting SpaceX, "because his innovative new space delivery systems were, frankly, beating the pants off of a lot of our kind of big, traditional defense contractors.
But Tesla's batteries are made in China, which uses coal-fired power and Uyghur workers to make them, and most of the vehicles are also manufactured there, said Warner.
"They could shut down his supplies overnight," the senator said, adding that he believes Musk is "so dependent on the goodwill of the Communist Party" because he fears it will shut down not only his battery factory but his Tesla factory in China.
"Remember, he has a plant here in America that makes cars for Americans, but the vast majority of Teslas sold around the world are made in China, and his comments about the communist regime concern me greatly," said Warner.
The senator added that he also questions Musk's comments that it's time for Ukraine to negotiate to end the war with Russia.
"That's not his job to tell the Ukrainian people so suddenly after they're being successful against [Russian President Vladimir] Putin, for them to back off," said Warner. "I take nothing away from his business acumen, but just because he may be a brilliant technologist does not mean that he is a savvy political player."
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