Despite appearing to play nicer with Trump than most other tech CEOs since Election Day, Tesla’s Elon Musk briefly tweeted and deleted statements against President Donald Trump’s travel ban for seven majority Muslim countries Wednesday.
The three tweets in question were briefly posted before being taken down:
— Sam Cornwell (@Samcornwell) February 15, 2017
In the tweets, Musk wrote that “the ban on Muslim immigrants from certain countries” rose to the level where it warranted a public statement and that it was “not right.” But after deleting them, Musk explained on Twitter that they were similar to comments he’d made before.
@Samcornwell they were earlier drafts that I accidentally published. I said the same thing a week already.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) February 15, 2017
Although Musk touched on the topic of the travel ban before, Wednesday’s statements were noticeably more declarative than Musk’s earlier comments. As TechCrunch noted, Musk had previously said the ban wasn’t “the best way to address the country’s challenges” and many of the people affected are “strong supporters of the US.”
Musk has been emblematic of the attitude of several tech industry CEOs, who’ve generally been willing to speak with the administration, though the controversy over the travel ban has given many a channel for protest.
Musk’s condemnation of the travel ban ties into his involvement with President Donald Trump’s business advisory council. Although the advisory council has drawn from CEOs from across various industries, tech CEOs like Musk have been subject to scrutiny.
Occasionally, this has resulted in backlash for working alongside the administration, as Uber CEO Travis Kalanick resigned from the council in the aftermath of the #deleteUber social media campaign. But for his part, Musk has said he intends to stay on the council.