Posts tagged with "The Daily Beast"

Democrats waste no time using Graham’s 15-week abortion ban to slam GOP

September 15, 2022

Entering a neatly prepared room in the Russell Senate Office Building on Tuesday, September 13, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) seemed jubilant to be introducing a national 15-week abortion ban in the wake of Roe v. Wade being overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court on June 6, reports The Daily Beast.

But while Graham figuratively thumped his chest, Democrats throughout Washington were locking eyes with the bill—almost instantly behaving as if Graham was throwing them a thick, juicy bone.

For months Democrats have been warning of the very possibility Graham is now making a reality: Republicans pushing for a national abortion ban taking away states’ rights. With Graham’s latest version of the bill introduced, just weeks before an election no less, Democrats no longer have to speak in hypotheticals.

“If we take back the House and Senate, I can assure we’ll have a vote,” Graham said at a press conference. Democrats wasted no time in seizing on Graham’s message.

“Senate Republicans are showing voters exactly what they would do if they are in charge: pass a nationwide abortion ban and strip away women’s right to make our own health care decisions… the stakes of protecting and expanding our Democratic Senate Majority in November have never been higher,” said Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee spokesperson Nora Keefe.

“Very simple: If you want to protect the right to choose, and you want to protect a woman’s right to health care, vote for more Democratic senators. You want to have a nationwide abortion ban? Vote for MAGA Republicans,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said at a press conference Tuesday.

“There you have it — if Republicans take control, they will vote to pass a national abortion ban. Take them at their word,” the Democratic National Committee’s War Room wrote in a tweet.

“Lindsey Graham just said the quiet part out loud. The right to an abortion is on the ballot this November…” tweeted Representative Mondaire Jones (D-New York).

Graham said Tuesday that he wants to try and put Democrats on the record about whether they support a 15-week abortion ban. The first nine pages of the bill base the 15-week cutoff around the argument that fetuses begin to feel pain around that point—though research on the exact point that fetuses can feel pain varies.

Graham also insisted he wants a vote on the bill in the immediate future, insisting he believes a few Democrats could possibly join Republicans on the issue.

Asked whether he spoke to Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) about the bill, Graham said no—but, a few hours later, he may have wished he had.

“I think most of the members of my conference prefer that this be dealt with at the state level,” McConnell told reporters.

McConnell wasn’t the only Republican annoyed at Graham’s timing on a day that should have been a slam dunk in the message wars. Tuesday morning, the latest Consumer Price Index report said inflation is still on the rise, even as gas prices fell dramatically in August.

Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-West Virginia) told Politico curtly, “I’m not sure what he’s thinking here. But I don’t think there will be a rallying around that concept.”

Democrats jumping to capitalize on Graham’s new bill also comes after a number of voting wins on abortion for the party. Kansas passed a pro-abortion-rights ballot referendum last month—and Democrats have won competitive House races in Alaska and New York in the wake of the Dobbs v. Jackson ruling.

Voter registration among women and young people is also on the rise, a trend pollsters have attributed in part to the abortion rights issue.

Graham’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Democrats latching on to the issue.

But Graham brushed off concerns that abortion has been a force for Democratic voter turnout at his press conference Tuesday, and questions about whether his bill would make the situation worse for Republicans this midterm cycle.

“I don’t think this is going to hurt us,” he said. “I think it’ll more likely hurt them when they try to explain to some reasonable person why it’s OK.”

Research contact: @thedailybeast

Steve Bannon surrenders to Manhattan DA for ‘Build the Wall’ financial fraud case

September 9, 2022

Rightwing provocateur Steve Bannon turned himself in Thursday morning, September 8, to the Manhattan district attorney’s office, where he is expected to face criminal charges of financial fraud, reports The Daily Beast.

New York prosecutors are attempting to nail him for crimes that former President Donald Trump already had pardoned. However, that presidential Get Out of Jail card only applied to a previous federal case that had to be dropped. The DA operates at a state level and doesn’t have to abide by that pardon.

Bannon—who was scheduled to be arraigned at 2:30 p.m. (EDT)—had to turn over his passport, according to a source familiar with the case. That person said the DA’s case is being handled by two prosecutors in the office’s economic crimes bureau: assistant district attorneys Daniel Passeser and Michael Frantel.

The U.S. Constitution guarantees that a person cannot be prosecuted twice for the same crime, a concept known as “double jeopardy.” However, New Yorkers fed up with rampant corruption during the Trump Administration sought to create a loophole of sorts in 2019—allowing the state to pursue criminal charges on a local level that weren’t being addressed at the federal one.

The Manhattan DA’s office has taken the same approach with other Trump World associates. Last year, it brought a criminal cyberstalking case  against another person who previously had received a Trump pardon: Ken Kurson, a former editor of The New York Observer who’s close with Trump’s son-in-law and former Observer owner Jared Kushner. Earlier this year, Kurson took a plea deal for unlawfully spying on his ex-wife.

Research contact: @thedailybeast

Stephen King to testify for government in book-publisher merger trial

August 3, 2022

As the Justice Department bids to convince a federal judge that the proposed merger of Penguin Random House and Simon & Schuster would damage the careers of some of the most popular authors, it is leaning in part on the testimony of a writer who has thrived like few others: Stephen King, reports ABC.

 The author of “Carrie,” “The Shining,” and many other favorites, King has willingly—even eagerly—placed himself in opposition to Simon & Schuster, his longtime publisher, ABC says. He was not chosen by the government just for his fame, but for his public criticism of the $2.2 billion deal announced in late 2021—joining two of the world’s biggest publishers into what rival CEO Michael Pietsch of Hachette Book Group has called a “gigantically prominent” entity.

 “The more the publishers consolidate, the harder it is for indie publishers to survive,” King tweeted last year.

 One of the few widely recognizable authors, known for his modest-sized glasses and gaunt features, King is scheduled to take the witness stand Tuesday, August 2, the second day of a federal antitrust trial anticipated last two to three weeks.

 He may not have the business knowledge of Pietsch, the DOJ’s first witness, but he has been a published novelist for nearly 50 years and knows well how much the industry has changed: Some of his own former publishers were acquired by larger companies. “Carrie,” for instance, was published by Doubleday, which in 2009 merged with Knopf Publishing Group and now is part of Penguin Random House. Another former King publisher, Viking Press, was a Penguin imprint that joined Penguin Random House when Penguin and Random House merged in 2013.

King’s affinity for smaller publishers is personal. Even while continuing to publish with the Simon & Schuster imprint Scribner, he has written thrillers for the independent Hard Case Crime. Years ago, the publisher asked him to contribute a blurb, but King instead offered to write a novel for them, “The Colorado Kid,” released in 2005.

 “Inside I was turning cartwheels,” Hard Case co-founder Charles Ardai would remember thinking when King contacted him.

 King, himself, would likely benefit from the Penguin Random House-Simon & Schuster deal, but he has a history of favoring other priorities beyond his material well-being. He has long been a critic of tax cuts for the rich, even as “the rich” surely includes Stephen King, and has openly called for the government to raise his taxes.

 “In America, we should all have to pay our fair share,” he wrote for The Daily Beast in 2012.

 On Monday, attorneys for the two sides offered contrasting views of the book industry. Government attorney John Read invoked a dangerously narrow market, ruled tightly by the Big Five— Penguin Random House, Simon & Schuster, HarperCollins Publishing, Macmillan and Hachette—with little chance for smaller or startup publishers to break through.

  Attorney Daniel Petrocelli argued for the defense that the industry actually is diverse, profitable, and open to newcomers. Publishing, he said, means not just the Big Five, but also such medium-size companies as W.W. Norton & Co. and Grove Atlantic. The merger, he contended, would in no way upend the ambitions so many hold for literary success.

 “Every book starts out as an anticipated bestseller in the gleam of an author’s or an editor’s eye,” he said.

 Research contact: @ABC

Josh Hawley pledges not to‘run,’ after being caught running from Trump mob

July 26, 2022

On Thursday evening, July 21, during a primetime hearing, the January 6 committee played stunning footage  of Senator  Josh Hawley  (R-Missouri) running away from a mob of pro-Trump vigilantes that he had been seen riling up just hours earlier, reports The Daily Beast.

Despite the clip—which clearly showed the Republican lawmaker on the run from the Capitol attackers—nearly 24 hours later, he pledged to a group of young conservative activists that he would not “run” away from a battle.

“Hey, listen, I know what I’m talking about because I had them do it to me,” he proudly declared at Turning Point USA’s summer conference in Tampa on Friday evening—referring to being called a “traitor” over pushing for “election integrity.”

“I objected on January 6 last year to the state of Pennsylvania,” he boasted, adding,

“And I just want to say to all of those liberals out there and the liberal media, just in case you haven’t gotten the message yet, I do not regret it,” Hawley continued. “And I am not backing down. I’m not gonna apologize, I’m not gonna cower, I’m not gonna run from you.”

“I’m not gonna bend the knee,” he concluded.

The remarks come as both Hawley and former President Donald Trump attempt to push back on the bombshell January 6 hearing, The Daily Beast says.

Late Thursday night, Trump had a meltdown on his social media site, Truth Social. “I had an election Rigged and Stolen from me, and our Country. The USA is going to Hell,” he fumed after midnight. “Am I supposed to be happy?”

A source close to the ex-president told The Daily Beast during the hearing that Trump has expressed continued frustration at the “one-sided forum,” which gives no opportunity for “cross-examination” or the ability for Trump to “present [his] side.”

“There’s no courtroom in this country where that would be allowed,” the source, who regularly speaks to Trump, said.

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January 6 Panel lays out Trump’s dangerous ‘call to arms’

July 14, 2022

As the January 6 committee’s explosive string of televised hearings resumed on Tuesday, July 12, the panel focused on “three rings” of the insurrection: Former President Donald Trump’s inside pressure campaign to persuade his vice president to overturn the electoral votes; the coordination between right-wing extremist groups to violently sack the Capitol; and the force of a MAGA crowd willing to march alongside them, reports The Daily Beast.

“All of these efforts would converge and explode on January 6th,” Representative Jamie Raskin (D-Maryland), a member of the congressional panel, said Tuesday.

Raskin added that “the problem of politicians whipping up crowds” was “the oldest domestic enemy of constitutional democracy in America.”

But Trump’s decision to order his angry followers to march on the Capitol on January 6, 2021 wasn’t spontaneous. The committee on Tuesday afternoon revealed a draft tweet that Trump wrote, but never sent, telling people, “Please arrive early, massive crowds expected, March to the Capitol after. Stop the Steal!!”

The committee also disclosed White House call logs that showed Trump twice spoke to right-wing provocateur Steve Bannon on the morning of January 5 shortly before Bannon took to his podcast to announce, “All hell is going to break loose tomorrow. It’s all converging, and we’re on the point of attack.”

But the biggest bombshell of the hearing came in its final seconds, when Representative Liz Cheney (R-Wyoming), the committee’s co-chair, revealed that Trump recently tried to reach an undisclosed witness who has yet to testify. The matter, Cheney said, was referred by the committee to the Department of Justice, after the witness—who did not pick up the phone and has not been identified—reported it to his or her attorney.

The revelation is an obvious warning to stop Trump and his associates from further intimidating insiders who are willing to speak to investigators—and is a shot across the bow with the threat of criminal charges for witness tampering. A Trump spokesperson and his attorneys did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

So far, the Republican Party has lambasted these congressional hearings as a proxy attack on the former president. But the committee’s seventh hearing is already showing something that goes well beyond politics: the direct connection between a president who refused to leave office and armed insurrectionists who played a pivotal role in his attempt to interrupt the transfer of power.

At least three groups with ties to fascists and white supremacists—the Oath Keepers, the Three Percenters, and the Proud Boys—served as bodyguards to Trump associates in the run-up to the insurrection. They also played pivotal roles in pushing past police lines on January 6, 2021.

The chairman of the congressional panel, Representative Bennie Thompson (D-Mississippi), started the hearing by criticizing Trump’s refusal to concede in the weeks after the 2020 election and his role in the nation’s capital that day. “He seized on the anger he had already stoked among his … supporters. He didn’t wave them off. He urged them on.”

“Donald Trump summoned a mob to Washington, D.C., and ultimately spurred that mob to wage a violent attack on our democracy.”

On Tuesday, the committee also revealed that Trump went out of his way to insert menacing references to Mike Pence, the vice president whom he felt betrayed him.

An initial draft of his speech at the Ellipse park south of the White House on January 6 made no reference to Pence. White House records show that an angry reference to Pence was added after a chat that morning between Trump and his hardline rightwing political adviser, Stephen Miller.

That reference was quickly cut by speechwriters who knew better. But then Pence told Trump one final time that he was not willing to break with tradition—and violate the law—by abusing his role as president of the Senate and refusing to officially count electoral ballots. Shortly thereafter, special assistant to the president Robert Gabriel Jr. wrote an email to staff: “REINSERT THE MIKE PENCE LINES.”

By sorting through White House records, the committee also spotted how Trump ad-libbed and turned that single Pence reference into a total of eight. He took one reference to marching on the Capitol and repeated it three more times. His additions included, “Let’s walk down Pennsylvania Avenue,” and, “We fight like hell, and if you don’t fight like hell, you’re not gonna have a country anymore.”

Cheney, the top Republican on the committee, noted that Trump should have known better than to continue to espouse conspiracy theories about the election results: “Donald Trump is a 76-year-old man,” she said. “He is not an impressionable child.”

Providing further proof that the ex-commander in chief should have called it quits before the day of the insurrection, the panel played clips of interviews with Trump’s labor secretary, Eugene Scalia, and his former White House Counsel Pat Cipollone, in which they both stated that Trump should have conceded when presented with the overwhelming evidence that he lost to Joe Biden in 2020.

Even Trump’s own digital guru, Brad Parscale, laid the blame for the violence at his boss’s feet. He and spokeswoman Katrina Pierson, who both worked on Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign together, texted each other while the pepper spray was still being aired out of the Capitol building the evening of the assault.

“This is about Trump pushing for uncertainty in our country. A sitting president asking for civil war. This week I feel guilty for helping him win,” Parscale wrote to Pierson, according to texts acquired by the committee.

“You did what you felt right at the time and therefore it was right,” Pierson responded.

“Yeah. But a woman is dead,” Parscale said, referring to Ashli Babbitt, who was shot to death by a police officer as she and other protestors tried to break into the Speaker’s Lobby on their way to the House of Representatives Chamber.

Parscale further clarified that he thought that the rioters entered the Capitol building—and that Babbit was dead—because of the former president’s “rhetoric.”

Research contact: @thedailybeast

Albuquerque to unveil bronze statues of Walter White and Jesse Pinkman from ‘Breaking Bad’

July 12, 2022

In a move set to rival Philly’s statue of Rocky Balboa, Albuquerque will this month unveil statues of Walter White and Jesse Pinkman from Breaking Bad, reports The Daily Beast.

The bronze statues of the fictional methamphetamine manufacturers—played in the series by actors Bryan Cranston (White) and Aaron Paul (Pinkman)—were originally commissioned by series creator Vince Gilligan, who is now donating them to the New Mexico city along with Sony Pictures Television.

“Over the course of 15 years, two TV shows, and one movie, Albuquerque has been wonderful to us,” Gilligan said in a press release. “I wanted to return the favor and give something back.”

The sculptures are set to go on display at the Albuquerque Convention Center this month. “We also appreciate that the statues will be indoors, and therefore protected from pigeons depositing their critiques on our heads,” Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul added.

Research contact: @thedailybeast

‘Satanic’ Georgia tablets despised by conspiracy theorists bombed

July 8, 2022

Part of a Georgia monument despised by right-wing conspiracy theorists was reduced to rubble on Wednesday morning, July 6, by an explosion, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation revealed, according to a report by The Daily Beast.

The bomb attack targeted the Georgia Guidestones—a set of mysterious, 19-foot-tall tablets inscribed with messages that appear to offer advice on how humanity should recover from an apocalyptic event.

Pictures of the site on social media appeared to show that one of the monument’s four main tablets had been destroyed in the bombing.

The blast was carried out by “unknown individuals” around 4 a.m., according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. A local TV station reported that nearby residents heard an explosion-like sound around the same time.

The Guidestones, which sit in a field in rural Elberton, Georgia, have been a focus of attention for conspiracy theorists since they were erected in 1979 at the behest of an unknown patron. The tablets are inscribed with a series of admonitions, including a call to keep the global population under 500 million people—advice that conspiracy theorists like InfoWars chief Alex Jones have taken as proof of an elite plot to kill off most of humanity.

Jones reacted to the attack on a Wednesday broadcast of his online show, saying he appreciated the image of the bombed-out monument “on an animal level,” but criticized the destruction itself.

“We need that evil edifice there as a confession letter led by a consortium of eugenicists,” Jones said.

While the guidestones were targets of on-and-off criticism from pastors for decades—fearful that they would become the site of Satanic worship—the attacks on the guidestones reached a new fervor in the past decade. Kandiss Taylor, a former far-right Republican gubernatorial candidate, tried to turn the guidestones into a campaign issue before her primary defeat earlier this year. Taylor recorded a video of herself driving to Elberton to “confront” the guidestones and vowed to issue an executive order if elected to order them destroyed.

Taylor appeared to welcome the bombing in a tweet on Wednesday: “God is God all by Himself,” Taylor tweeted. “He can do ANYTHING He wants to do. That includes striking down Satanic Guidestones.”

This isn’t the first time the guidestones have been targeted by vandals, although the attacks have never reached this level before. In the past, vandals have graffitied the guidestones with messages about the “New World Order” and the devil. As a result of those earlier crimes, a security camera was mounted near the guidestones.

Research contact: @thedailybeast

Trump slams Ivanka and denies saying Pence ‘deserves’ to hang in ‘Truth Social’ meltdown

June 13, 2022

After a video clip displayed by the January 6 House Committee plainly showed  Ivanka Trump testifying that she didn’t believe her dad’s wild theory that the 2020 election was stolen—but instead that she accepted former Attorney General Bill Barr’s assurance that there had been no fraud connected with the 2020 election—her father, former President Donald Trump returned the favor by attacking her credibility as a witness, reports The Daily Beast.

Specifically, Ivanka told the congressional panel that she had changed her mind about whether or not the election was rigged after Barr, Trump’s AG for most of 2020, told her that it wasn’t. “I respect Attorney General Barr,” Ivanka said on the video of her testimony shown by the committee during a prime time special on Thursday night, June 9, “So I accepted what he was saying.

In immediate reaction, the following morning, Trump did not hesitate to throw his supposed favorite child under the bus: The former president rushed to tell his followers that they should pay no mind to what his daughter had said. “Ivanka Trump was not involved in looking at, or studying, Election results,” the former president wrote. “She had long since checked out and was, in my opinion, only trying to be respectful to Bill Barr and his position as Attorney General (he sucked!).”

In a flurry of missives sent via his Truth Social channel early on Friday, June 10, Trump also denied having agreed with rioters’ chants to hang Mike Pence and—just for good measure—reaffirmed his baseless claim that the election was stolen.

And it wasn’t just Ivanka’s testimony that left Trump all hot and bothered. Representative Liz Cheney (R-Wyoming) revealed that former Trump aides said the president had reacted to mob chants to hang his vice president with shocking approval, including with the ice-cold phrase: “Mike Pence deserves it.” Again, Trump contradicted the testimony with all-caps fury. “I NEVER said, or even thought of saying, ‘Hang Mike Pence,’” he wrote. “This is either a made up story by somebody looking to become a star, or FAKE NEWS!”

“The so-called ‘Rush on the Capitol’ was not caused by me,” Trump continued, “It was caused by a Rigged and Stolen Election!” Returning to another familiar refrain, the former commander-in-chief also appeared to sum up his feelings toward the bipartisan House select committee generally as: “A one sided, totally partisan, POLITICAL WITH HUNT!”

He earlier used the platform to claim that the panel “refuses to play any of the many positive witnesses and statements, refuses to talk of the Election Fraud and Irregularities that took place on a massive scale,” before adding: “Our Country is in such trouble!”

At the hearing Thursday, committee Chair Bennie Thompson (D-Mississippi) directly blamed Trump for the attack on the Capitol after the 2020 election. “He spurred a mob of domestic enemies of the constitution to march down the capital and subvert American democracy,” Thompson said.

Representative Cheney further pointed to Trump’s repeated claims that the election was stolen as the reason the attack took place. “Those who invaded our Capitol and battled law enforcement for hours were motivated by what President Trump had told them: that the election was stolen, and that he was the rightful president,” Cheney said in her opening statement. “President Trump summoned the mob, assembled the mob, and lit the flame of this attack.”

Research contact: @thedailybeast

Georgia’s top elections official, Brad Raffensperger, claims primary win despite Trump’s wrath

May 26, 2022

Georgia’s top elections official, Brad Raffensperger, proved on May 25 that a low-key Republican can stand up to former President Donald Trump and still come out on top, reports The Daily Beast.

Indeed, according to the Beast, the Republican secretary of state overcame the odds and won Tuesday’s primary race—beating two Big Lie conspiracy theorists who tried to make him pay for standing by the real 2020 election results.

Raffensperger’s ability to bat away contenders—and even avoid a run-off election—shows that he is still riding high on his moment of triumph last year, when he became a hero to Democrats and moderate Republicans for resisting Trump’s menacing pleas to overturn election results in Georgia.

Although Representative Jody Hice (R-Georgia) received a massive boost from  Trump’s endorsement, the traditionally conservative Raffensperger now forges ahead against a Democrat in November.

In Georgia, primary candidates need to win a majority to avoid a runoff. According to state data Tuesday evening, Raffensperger narrowly pulled off the feat. With 89% of precincts across the state reporting in results, Raffensperger just barely pulled ahead with 52%.

The Daily Beast spoke to Raffensperger at his election night party on Tuesday night at a restaurant in Atlanta’s northern suburb of Peachtree Corners, where the mood was buoyant. When asked about how Hice and Belle Isle had based much of their challenge on the 2020 election dispute, Raffensperger told The Daily Beast he thought it was all hot air and pandering.

“Have them put their hands on the Bible, and they’ll do a 180,” he said.

Later that night, he and his elections team—which included campaign supervisor Jordan Fuchs—jointly decided to declare victory and pop bottles of champagne just before midnight. Close supporters and state agency employees could be heard making toasts to “integrity.”

“To democracy,” said Noula Zaharis, a regulator at the secretary of state’s office who oversees securities and charities.

Research contact: @thedailybeast

(April Fools!) Elon Musk is not joining Twitter’s board, after all

April 12, 2022

Twitter’s top brass thought one of the platform’s top trolls had decided to join their ranks, but in the end he was just trolling them, too, reports The Daily Beast.

Late Sunday the social media company’s CEO, Parag Agrawaltweeted that Elon Musk would not join Twitter’s board—reversing a much-publicized plan announced April 5. Musk had revealed around the same time that he had bought up a 9.2% stake in the business, becoming its largest shareholder in the process.

“Elon’s appointment to the board was to become officially effective 4/9, but Elon shared that same morning that he will no longer be joining the board. I believe this is for the best,” Agrawal wrote. Seemingly alluding to Musk’s provocations and the accompanying media fervor, Agrawal added, “There will be distractions ahead, but our goals and priorities remain unchanged.”

Musk, for his part, simply tweeted a version of the following emoji: 🤭.

Agrawal’s comments marked a dramatic change in tone from his tweets on April 5, when he said that Musk was “both a passionate believer and intense critic of the service, which is exactly what we need on @Twitter, and in the boardroom.”

Days later, Musk spent part of the weekend polling his followers about ways to change Twitter, in forms both serious and farcical.

“Delete the w in twitter?” he asked on Sunday. The poll’s two possible answers: “Yes” and “Of course.”

Separately, Musk mulled whether Twitter’s headquarters should be converted into a homeless shelter and offered policy suggestions for the company’s paid membership service, Twitter Blue, including a new type of verification badge.

Musk was perhaps dissuaded from joining the board because of a stipulation that would have banned him from acquiring more than a 14.9% ownership stake in the business. To some spectators, including Musk’s legion of followers on Twitter, the provision suggested that the company’s leadership team merely wanted to restrict how much influence he could amass.

Musk had polled his followers in March about whether Twitter was adhering to principles of free speech (more than 70% said no). When news of his investment subsequently became public, it seemed that he had bought stock in response to their feedback.

In fact, filings show, he started buying shares at least as far back as January.

Over the years, Musk has used the platform to announce official news from his main companies, Tesla and SpaceX; to sound off on critics; and to troll the internet. That has landed him in hot water a number of times.

Most infamously, in 2018 he declared that he was considering taking the electric automaker private at a price of $420 per share—sending the company’s stock on a wild ride.

The Securities and Exchange Commission was not amused, particularly after it determined that Musk had not truly had the “funding secured,” as he suggested. He eventually settled with the agency, paid a $20 million fine, and stepped down as Tesla’s chairman.

But his Twitter fingers haven’t slowed down since.

Research contact: @thedailybeast