Elon Musk Threatens To Pull Tesla Out Of California In Response To State’s Coronavirus Restrictions

Elon Musk appears at an event.
Win McNamee / Getty Images

Elon Musk said he is considering pulling Tesla out of the state of California over the state’s ongoing restrictions to prevent spread of the coronavirus, which has forced the company’s facilities to close through June.

The Tesla CEO spoke out on Saturday, taking to Twitter to announce plans for a lawsuit against the Alameda County health officer for the stay-at-home order that has kept the company closed down.

“Tesla is filing a lawsuit against Alameda County immediately. The unelected & ignorant ‘Interim Health Officer’ of Alameda is acting contrary to the Governor, the President, our Constitutional freedoms & just plain common sense,” Musk tweeted.

As The Hill reported, California Gov. Gavin Newsom had announced this week that some factories in the state would be able to start reopening, but noted that local governments may have their own limitations depending on the number of cases or deaths there. The report noted that health officials in Alameda County had asked Tesla to wait after the company presented a safety plan for reopening.

Tesla had reportedly sent an email to employees this week saying that it would start opening “limited operations” at the factory in Alameda County, which The Hill noted would be against the stay-at-home orders.

Musk spoke out, saying on Saturday that he was planning to move the company’s headquarters and future programs to Texas and Nevada.

“If we even retain Fremont manufacturing activity at all, it will be dependent on how Tesla is treated in the future,” he tweeted, noting that the company is the last carmaker operating in California.

Musk has been vocal about his desire to see the American economy reopen after weeks of restrictions from the coronavirus outbreak. Last month, he took to Twitter to call on government officials to end restrictions and “free” America again. Musk also shared an article about the state of Texas allowing some businesses to start reopening at the beginning of May.

Musk had previously expressed ideas in the earlier days of the outbreak that fears over the coronavirus were overblown.

Public health experts have warned that if states start to reopen too soon or before the spread of the virus has properly slowed, it could lead to a surge in new cases. As The Inquisitr reported, a mathematical model put together by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology found that there would be an “exponential explosion” of cases if the restrictions were removed too soon.