Former President Trump stressed on Tuesday that he will not rejoin Twitter even with Tesla CEO Elon Musk in control and argued that the social media platform is a "dying tiger."
Speaking during a wide-ranging interview on "Varney & Co.," the former president, who had been banned from Twitter and backed the new social network Truth Social, said that Musk wants him to go back on "very badly."
Earlier this month, Musk said he would overturn Trump’s Twitter ban if his purchase of the company is successful.
The billionaire Tesla owner made the comment during an appearance at FT Live's "Future of the Car" conference on Tuesday. Twitter accepted his offer to purchase the company on April 25, but Musk says the deal will take another two to three months before it is finalized.
"Permanent bans should be extremely rare and really reserved for accounts that are bots, or scam, spam accounts… I do think it was not correct to ban Donald Trump," Musk said. "I think that was a mistake, because it alienated a large part of the country and did not ultimately result in Donald Trump not having a voice."
"I would reverse the permanent ban," Musk added. "I don’t own Twitter yet. So this is not like a thing that will definitely happen, because what if I don’t own Twitter?"
Trump, conversely, argued that Truth Social is "a hot one right now."
"We watch the bots and we watch the spams. We watch all of this stuff," Trump said. "I think Twitter has a bad story ahead of it."
|I:DJI||DOW JONES AVERAGES||30861.42||-106.40||-0.34%|
|I:COMP||NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX||11323.046216||+0.81||+0.01%|
Trump also revealed on Tuesday that he hasn’t lost any money in the stock market amid the recent volatility because he hasn’t invested in stocks, citing his lack of "confidence in the market right now."
He went on to say that he thinks the U.S. will experience a recession in the near future.
Trump made the comments as U.S. stocks traded lower on Tuesday with the Nasdaq Composite down over 2% on fresh worries about a slowing economy.
He also weighed in on soaring gas prices on Tuesday as gas prices have been hitting record highs for two consecutive weeks.
On Tuesday, the national average for a gallon of gas was $4.59, slightly higher than the day before and nearly 50 cents higher compared to the prior month, according to AAA.
Tighter supply and increased demand have pushed gas prices higher, according to the association.
Trump argued that if President Biden forces a transition away from fossil fuels, "we are going to be unable to compete with the rest of the world and we will have a very, very downgraded economy."
He went on to say that the Biden administration’s energy policies are "crazy."
In a series of orders aimed at combating climate change, President Biden cancelled the Keystone XL oil pipeline project on his first day in office and temporarily suspended the issuance of oil and gas permits on federal lands and waters.
The administration resumed the new leasing last month following court challenges against the ban. The administration is appealing a ruling in which Judge James Cain, a Trump appointee, struck down the ban.
Trump noted that when he was in office the U.S. "had so much oil."
"I filled up the national Strategic [Petroleum] Reserve at almost nothing because I did it at a low point," he said, adding that now Biden "is taking that, which is a tiny little Band-Aid, and trying to get gas prices down by going into the strategic reserves that I built up."
The White House has blamed Russian President Vladimir Putin for the record-high gas prices in the U.S., even coining the surge as the "#PutinPriceHike" and vowing that President Biden will do everything he can to shield Americans from "pain at the pump."
Trump argued on Tuesday that "the Russia Ukraine situation would have never ever happened, zero chance, under the Trump administration."
Biden, last month, announced that the Environmental Protection Agency will allow the sale of E15 gasoline – gasoline that uses a 15% ethanol blend – across the country this summer. In addition, as Trump noted, Biden has moved to release 1 million barrels of oil per day from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve for the next 6 months. The president is also calling on Congress to make companies pay fees on idled oil wells and non-producing acres of federal lands, aiming to incentivize new production.
Trump also touched on the subject of the 2024 President Election, telling Varney on Tuesday that "he wouldn’t be concerned" if former Vice President Mike Pence decided to run for president in 2024.
His comments come on the heels of Pence suggesting that the former VP may run, saying, "We’ll go where we’re called," the New York Times reported on Monday.
Trump told Varney that Pence throwing his hat in the ring would be ‘OK’ before touting some of his accomplishments as president, including a strong economy, "no inflation" and "the biggest tax cuts in history."
FOX Business’ Anders Hagstrom and Tyler O’Neil contributed to this report.