Since stay-at-home orders were implemented in California in the previous months, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has pushed back on them in a bid to reopen his company’s main manufacturing plant in Fremont. Now, as he continues to push the local and state government for an exception, he has appeared to gain a new ally in U.S. President Donald Trump.
On Tuesday, President Trump wrote on Twitter that “California should let Tesla & @elonmusk open the plant, NOW.” The President claimed that a reopening could be done “Fast & Safely!” This follows statements made by Musk on his Twitter account on Monday, where he stated that he would defy the state’s order and resume production, claiming if anyone should be arrested it should be him.
Following these tweets, Tesla shares rose 3% to $835.27. However, Tesla itself did not immediately comment on President Trump’s remarks.
The President has sparred with the Californian government many times over the course of his presidency. Topics such as immigration, fuel efficiency standards, and environmental issues are just some of the disagreements both sides have clashed over.
President Trump has spoken quite highly of Musk in the past. Back in January, he told CNBC that Musk was “one of our great geniuses, and we have to protect our genius.” He and Musk have also met several times at the White House over the past few years. California Governor Gavin Newsome also said on Monday he spoke to Musk a few days ago, citing the CEO’s concerns as part of the state’s phased reopening of manufacturing.
However, health officials in Alameda County stated late Monday that Tesla was operating beyond the “basic minimum operations.” The officials also said that they notified the company, telling them they could not operate without a county-approved plan. In response to the issues with reopening the plant, Musk has threatened to move operations to Texas or Nevada.