Democrat President Joe Biden’s Administration has launched an investigation into Elon Musk over the details surrounding his purchase of Twitter.
Biden’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is investigating Musk after he secured a deal to buy the social media company for $44 billion.
According to a new report in the Wall Street Journal, the SEC is probing the paperwork filed by Musk while he was putting the deal into place.
The WSJ reports, “The Securities and Exchange Commission is probing Mr. Musk’s tardy submission of a required public form that investors must file when they purchase more than 5% of a company’s shares.”
“The disclosure functions as an early indication to shareholders and companies that a significant investor could seek to control or influence the company.”
The report also says Musk’s April 4 disclosure filing was at least 10 days late, a move that is believed to have saved him more than $140 million because share prices could have been higher if the public knew about his ownership of 5% of the company.
“The case is easy. It’s straightforward,” Daniel Taylor, a University of Pennsylvania accounting professor, said. “But whether they’re going to pick that battle with Elon is another question.”
The report also noted that a lawsuit against Musk from the SEC would likely not stop him from taking over Twitter since the company’s board of directors unanimously approved to be acquired by Musk and the SEC may lack the power to do so.
Musk’s purchase of Twitter is also reportedly being reviewed by the Biden Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
The news emerged almost immediately after Musk said this week that he will reverse Twitter’s permanent ban on President Donald Trump if and when the sale is finalized.
“I think that was a mistake because it alienated a large part of the county, and did not ultimately result in Donald Trump not having a voice,” Musk said, adding that the decision was “morally bad.”
“That doesn’t mean that someone can say whatever they want to say,” Musk said.
“If they say something that is illegal or destructive to the world, then there should be perhaps a timeout, temporary suspension, or that particular tweet should be made invisible or have very little traction.”
“I would reverse the permanent ban,” Musk added.
Musk indicated that action could be taken against an account if there were tweets that violated platform policy, which he said, “should be either deleted or made invisible, and a suspension—a temporary suspension—is appropriate, but not a permanent ban.”
Musk said that permanent bans “should be extremely rare and exclusively reserved for false accounts such as bots, obvious scams or spam accounts.”✪