The recent ruling by the court has put Elon Musk into a pretty sticky situation of having to do away with one of his controversial tweets after taking over as the CEO of Twitter
A Federal court ruling on Friday ordered Tesla and Twitter CEO Elon Musk to delete a 2018 Tweet that suggested Tesla Inc employees could lose stock options on forming a union. The order was given out because the Tweet violated labor law.
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Court Orders Tesla to Remove Controversial Tweet
The court order comes across as a victory for the National Labor Relations Board, which was in intense opposition to Tesla opposing the United Auto Workers’ attempt to unionize the employees of Tesla. This has also left Musk in an awkward spot of needing to retract one of his controversial tweets even though he’s now the owner of Twitter. The labor board stated that Tesla repeatedly broke US law by firing a union activist. The court has now ordered the company to ensure Musk’s tweet is done away with. On the other hand, Tesla argues that the First Amendment guarantee of free speech protects the tweet.
A panel of three judges of the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans opined: “Tesla’s history of labor violations supports the NLRB’s finding that employees would understand Musk’s tweet as a threat to commit another violation by rescinding stock options as retaliation.” Former President Donald Trump, George W. Bush, and Bill Clinton appointed these judges. It also ordered the carmaker to reinstate union advocate Richard Ortiz with arrears. The company maintains that Ortiz was sacked for lying during an investigation.
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Musk Accuses Joe Biden of being Controlled by Unions
Tesla opposing the formation of a workers’ union has not ended well with the Biden administration. In 2021, Musk accused President Joe Biden of being a puppet of unions. Friction with US Securities and Exchange Commission due to his 2018 tweets got Musk, and Tesla slapped with a $40 million fine. It even led to an agreement that Musk would communicate about specific topics only after taking advanced approval from a Tesla lawyer. Last year, a judge even quashed Musk’s request to set him free from this ruling, which was called “Twitter Sitter.” In another case over the tweets, Musk won a jury trial this year on some shareholders claiming the CEO misled and defrauded them. He even won another trial in 2018 over defamation claims by a British cave diver who he called ‘pedo guy.’
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