Anti-Musk Lawfare? CNN Host Mattingly Questions Judge’s Ruling to Strip Musk of $55B

February 5th, 2024 9:16 AM

A recent decision to strip X and Tesla owner Elon Musk of $55 billion in Tesla stock seemingly appalled CNN This Morning co-hosts Phil Mattingly and Poppy Harlow. 

Despite the leftist network’s history of criticizing Musk and supporting censorship on his social media platform, Mattingly and Harlow were willing to say that Musk might have deserved the pay package recently stripped from him by a Delaware judge. On Jan. 30 a Delaware judge voided Musk’s $55 billion pay package from Tesla, an incentive-driven deal which Musk had taken instead of a salary. 

In response to the judge’s order, Mattingly appeared to defend the deal saying such an arrangement “should be how you structure your pay package, I would think.” 

Both Mattingly and Harlow agreed that Musk had taken a big risk in forgoing his salary and attempting to unlock the $55 billion payout by growing Tesla to enormous heights. Among other difficult tasks, Musk had to grow Tesla's market capitalization to $650 billion. 

“Structurally, it was designed in a way that was giving him money to take risks and hit high, hard-to-reach incentives,” Mattingly said of the Musk-Tesla deal.

Harlow replied, “Almost impossible to reach goals.” 

“And he hit them,” Mattingly concluded.

By contrast, CNBC reporter Courtney Reagan absurdly asked on the Feb. 1 edition of Power Lunch if Musk was being a “little petulant” by considering incorporating his company in Texas instead of Delaware. “Seems a little petulant, then, perhaps to leave because of this pay package.” 

It’s only $55 billion after all. At no point did Reagan mention that Musk’s compensation package was based on incentives tied to Tesla's growth. 

Conservatives are under attack! Contact CNN at 404-827-1500 and commend them for attempting to treat this issue fairly.