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President Biden reacts to Elon Musk's comments about the U.S. economy

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Yahoo Finance autos reporter Pras Subramanian details President Biden and Elon Musk's combative remarks on the U.S. economy and EV development, as the Tesla CEO announced his plan to cut 10 percent of staff.

Video Transcript

SEANA SMITH: Well, speaking of jobs, Tesla CEO Elon Musk making headlines after a leaked email revealed that he's planning to cut 10% of Tesla's workforce due to a, quote, "super bad feeling about the economy." President Joe Biden was asked about Elon's comments during a press conference earlier today. Let's take a listen to what he had to say.

JOE BIDEN: Elon Musk is talking about that. Ford is increasing their investment overwhelmingly. I think Ford is increasing investment in building new electric vehicles. 6,000 new employees, union employees, I might add, in the Midwest. The former Chrysler Corporation, Stellantis, they are also making similar investments in electric vehicles. Intel is adding 20,000 new jobs for making computer chips. So, lots of luck on his trip to the moon.

SEANA SMITH: For more on this, we want to bring Yahoo Finance's Pras Subramanian. Pras, President Biden kind of brushing aside any of the concern that Elon brought up about the economy. Those two have a pretty complicated relationship because we know Musk has been critical of President Biden and his administration. Yet, Musk is a key part for Biden's EV push. So it's kind of interesting to see how these two go after each other, or in President Biden's case, just dismisses his fears.

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Yeah, I think, really, you're right. It's a difficult relationship, right, because Biden wants to juice up those EV numbers, but he knows, who makes the most EVs? It's Tesla with non-union labor. And that's something of a problem for Biden because his constituency is all organized labor and it's unions. It's funny, he mentions that, like, look at Ford. They're investing money here, almost $4 billion, 6,000 union jobs to kind of talk about how Musk is sort of on the opposite end with the super bad feeling on the economy.

What's that all about? It's not really based on-- is it based on any data or any facts that Tesla has? We're not really sure. We didn't see the emails. But it's kind of a strange dichotomy here, with Biden saying, you know what? You have companies that are investing in America, and Tesla isn't. So I'm going to kind of go after you on that. And by the way, it's funny enough. He mentioned that super bad feeling. Today is June 3. It's McLovin's birthday [INAUDIBLE]

JARED BLIKRE: Oh. No kidding?

PRAS SUBRAMANIAN: Yeah, I heard that today, so.

SEANA SMITH: That's a good thing to point out.