Earlier this week, Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren tweeted at Tesla CEO Elon Musk that he should stop “freeloading off everyone else.”
After a few responses, Musk, who is the world’s richest person, tweeted separately on Sunday that he will be paying $11 billion in taxes.
“For those wondering, I will pay over $11bn in taxes this year,” Musk stated. Musk, who was co-founder of the electric car maker Tesla and aerospace manufacturer SpaceX, rose to the status of world’s richest person earlier this year.
Bloomberg Billionaires Index estimates Musk’s wealth at $243 billion, while Tesla is worth roughly $1 trillion, and SpaceX is worth around $100 billion. Musk was awarded the title of Time Magazine’s Person of the Year just last week.
That is what led Senator Warren to tweet, “Let’s change the rigged tax code so The Person of the Year will actually pay taxes and stop freeloading off everyone else.” Musk tweeted in response to the senator, “Stop projecting!” with an article linked from Fox News about Warren’s previous claims of being Native American.
“You remind me of when I was a kid and my friend’s angry Mom would just randomly yell at everyone for no reason,” he continued. “Please don’t call the manager on me, Senator Karen.” He finally added later, “And if you opened your eyes for 2 seconds, you would realize I will pay more in taxes than any American in history this year.”
Several senators, including Warren, have backed the concept of not only taxing the income of America’s wealthiest citizens, but also the increasing value of their assets, like shares. Instead of taking a directly taxable salary, many of America’s richest hold their wealth in shares or other investments. They’ll then sometimes take out loans and use those assets as collateral.
ARTICLE: ELIZABETH HERTZBERG
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: BUSINESS INSIDER