After learning that a new bill would put billions in the pocket of Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos, Bernie Sanders came out swinging on Wednesday as blasted the wealthy tech moguls and their decadent space race that has been playing out in the press. While addressing the Senate floor, Sanders voiced his criticism of the 2022 National Defense Authorization Act, which would include a massive subsidy for the already wealthy Bezos.
“This bill would provide and authorize $10 billion in taxpayer money to Jeff Bezos, the second wealthiest person in America, for his space race with Elon Musk, the wealthiest person in America,” Sanders said. “This is beyond laughable.”
At issue is Musk and Bezos essentially taking control of space exploration for their own private enterprise instead of directly benefiting the American people, who Sanders believes should be at the helm. Via Mediaite:
“It is not acceptable that the two wealthiest people in this country… take control of our space efforts to return to the moon, and maybe even the extraordinary accomplishment of getting to the moon,” he added, presumably with the intention of saying “Mars” in his second reference to the moon. “This is not something for two billionaires to be directing. This is something for the American people to be determining.”
Sanders’ remarks notably arrive not long after Musk taunted the senator on Twitter. After Sanders sent a broad, non-specific tweet about the extremely wealthy should “pay their fair share of taxes,” Musk hopped in the replies and wrote, “I keep forgetting that you’re still alive.” As someone who uses social media quite frequently, Musk should’ve been aware that Sanders is well loved on Twitter, and the Tesla CEO spent the next several hours being roasted for his swipe at Bernie.