Elon Musk could become a formal adviser to Trump if he wins the White House – The Independent

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The potential makeup of a second Donald Trump administration has been a topic of interest since the former president formally announced his third bid for the White House, but it could reportedly include one very surprising face: Elon Musk.

Musk, owner of Tesla and Twitter/X as well as founder of SpaceX, is reported by The Wall Street Journal to be in talks with the former president about an advisory role in a second Trump White House; a more official role than the one he is already playing as a voice on matters of tech policy in Trump’s ear.

The Journal’s sources cautioned that the talks are by no means in advanced stages and may well not lead to a formal position for Musk — if the ex-president even wins the election at all. But the conversations illustrate the former president’s continued alliances with conservative business leaders whose support some analysts expected Trump to lose after his first term in office ended in spectacular fashion with the riot at the US Capitol.

Trump and Musk are said to be talking by phone several times a month, with the Tesla mogul calling his ally in Mar-a-Lago on the latter’s personal cell. The two have discussed topics including technology, the US Space Force, and voter fraud, a favorite topic of Trump’s as it relates to his conspiracies about the 2020 election.

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The two men had previously developed a small rivalry after Musk stepped down from a White House advisory council on technology in mid-2017, a response to the Trump administration ending US participation in the Paris Climate Agreement.

Donald Trump and Elon Musk are pictured in the White House at an event in 2017 along with Steve Bannon, former White House chief strategist (AFP via Getty Images)

In general, a Cabinet under a second Donald Trump presidency would look markedly different. The ex-president is widely thought to have soured on the idea of facing any pushback from career officials and reportedly plans to stock his administration with loyalists if elected again. His former vice president, Mike Pence, has notably said that he would not support Mr Trump for the presidency again in 2024, even now given that his former boss is once again the GOP’s presumptive nominee.

Musk, who also hosted a conversation with independent presidential hopeful Robert F Kennedy Jr last year, is known to have taken his own sharp-right detour down the road to Trump-aligned conservatism over the past several years. He has revealed his own support for racist conspiracy theories like the “Great Replacement”; in late 2023, he described a Twitter screed which blamed Jews for supposedly “pushing … dialectical hatred against whites” as “the actual truth” in a reply comment.

In May, he also claimed that 2024’s presidential election would be the last in the US decided by citizens, pointing to a widely-held incorrect belief on the right that undocumented immigrants participate in national elections in significant numbers.

Musk said last week that he would host a presidential debate with RFK Jr in the coming days; it’s unlikely that either Trump or his twice-opponent, President Joe Biden, would participate.

The two major party contenders have reached an agreement to meet for several debates on major cable networks without the inclusion of the Comission on Presidential Debates, a nonpartisan body that has traditionally hosted such events. The Twitter/X CEO has argued that RFK Jr should be invited to participate in debates with Biden and Trump, though their exclusion of the debate commission makes that prospect increasingly unlikely.

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