Elon Musk Twitter
Molly Butler / Media Matters

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Right-wing media react to Elon Musk backing out of Twitter deal: “The purge is coming”

On Friday afternoon, billionaire Elon Musk filed to terminate his $44 billion deal to buy Twitter. In a letter to the company, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Musk’s lawyers accused Twitter of failing to provide Musk with information about the company’s business, specifically related to the number of bots or spam accounts on the site. Legal experts say this excuse would fail to hold up in court.

Right-wing media and banned Twitter users had originally praised the merger, having spent years pushing non-existent grievances of conservative social media censorship. Now that Musk is attempting to back out of the deal, those same personalities are clinging to Musk’s false bot scapegoat and mourning the demise of his false promises.

  • Fox News

    • Greg Gutfeld: “If he buys Twitter he wins, if he doesn't buy Twitter, he still won because he did a number of things. He exposed some of the hugest fallacies about this – about Twitter being fair, or Twitter being free. … I'm kind of sad because it would have been fun.” [Fox News, The Five, 7/8/22]
    • Jeanine Pirro: “I’m disappointed, like Greg, I really am. I like the idea of someone coming in and talking about free speech and telling people, you know, you’re not going to have a crying room anymore and someone who’s pro-First Amendment.” [Fox News, The Five, 7/8/22]
    • Clay Travis: “[Elon Musk’s] got the engineers and data analysts to be able to review what you basically call the firehose of data that they relinquished to him to allow him to try to determine how many of the accounts on this platform are real, how many are fake, how many of them are spam, bots, versus actual, real people. And so, to me, if Elon Musk ever publishes the data that he may have uncovered as a part of this investigation, that could be unbelievably crippling to the overall impact of Twitter.” [Fox News, Jesse Watters Primetime, 7/8/22]
    • Gregg Jarrett: “But doesn't it all come down to fraud? Were there intentional misrepresentations and false statements that led to a material breach of the contract?” [Fox News, Hannity, 7/8/22]
  • Twitter

    • Donald Trump Jr: “Elon musk is terminating his agreement to buy Twitter: So basically Twitter has a huge amount of spam accounts —way more than they let on — and has gotten busted for it!!! As I said weeks ago spam accounts are probably 50% not 5% of Twitter users” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Sebastian Gorka: “BREAKING Twitter lied about the number of Spam accounts on its platform. Therefore Elon Musk is withdrawing his purchase offer.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Benny Johnson: “@elonmusk when the stock drops like a rock you should buy it at a discount.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Howard Kurtz: “Elon Musk tells Twitter he's terminating $44-billion deal, using spam accounts as a reason. There will be litigation and he may have to pay $1-B breakup fee. After that huge buildup, is he just backing out because Twitter stock plunged and made it a much more costly deal?” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Dave Rubin: “Holy shit. The party is really over here. The purge is coming. Find me @onlocals at http://rubinreport.locals.com." [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Ben Shapiro: “Whoo boy.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Jimmy Failla: “Twitter must be a total scam behind the scenes to make a guy with 6 kids pull out.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Ned Ryun: “Hahahaha. There's no way only 5% of Twitter accounts are spam/bots. . . . Try 25-30% minimum.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Clay Travis: “Elon Musk says he’s not buying Twitter for $44 billion because of all the bots & fake accounts. Twitter says it’s suing him to compel purchase. I’d bet on a lower purchase price being negotiated before all is done here” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Leo Terrell: “Thank goodness I have #TruthSocial in case @Twitter goes left again!” [Twitter, 7/8/22
    • Brandon Darby: “@elonmusk Dude. Huge fan here— I use Starlink and I drive one of your cars. If you’re playing some price negotiation, ok. But otherwise, super uncool to give hope to free speech advocates and then bail like that. It actually meant something to a lot of people." [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Sean Davis: “Kinda weird how you throttled his API access during due diligence to limit his ability to verify your claims about fake accounts and bots.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Derek Hunter: “Twitter really needed to protect the house of cards they built, so they couldn't give complete or accurate data on bots. Honestly, I hope the whole damn things goes under, or at least collapses to the point the @elonmusk can pick it up for a song.” [Twitter, 7/8/22
    • Ian Miles Cheong: “The dream is dead.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Raheem Kassam: "Yo @anneluty add it to the “RAHEEM WAS RIGHT” list." [Twitter, 7/8/22
    • Ezra Levant: “Watch for a torrent of suspended accounts. The woke censors have months of pent up politics to let out.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Inez Stepman:  “Well, so much for getting our own champ in billionaire rock em sock em. Maybe now we treat this as the political problem it is?” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Charlie Kirk: “Maybe Elon never intended to buy Twitter at all. Maybe he just wanted to expose it.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Dagen McDowell: “Reckon Elon’s decided to be a stay-at-home dad.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Greg Kelly: "WTFuck @elonmusk ?????!!!!! Now You're NOT buying Twitter? I AM SO SCREWED. What happened?  Was this a PUNK?  Maybe you've been SNIFFING too much of that ROCKET FUEL.  Thanks. FOR NOTHING!! #boycottTesla" [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Marc Lotter: “So, @elonmusk got @Twitter to fight “TO” be taken over and now opens everything up to “discovery”? BRILLIANT!!!” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Steven Crowder: “Elon Musk has terminated his deal to buy Twitter. But perhaps he’s got something up his sleeve.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Dana Loesch: “So Twitter lied about the percentage of its spam accounts. I hope Musk can come back with a super cheap offer reflecting Twitter’s true value, otherwise this platform will shadowban and manipulate the rest of its real users away.” [Twitter, 7/8/22]
    • Jack Posobiec: “Bannon called it” [Twitter, 7/8/22
    • Larry Elder: “Now that it appears that @elonmusk is NOT buying @Twitter, the platform is back to bottle capping my followers. For months, I gained no followers—until Musk announced his purchase, Then, miraculously, I gained 10K within hours. Now it’s back to suppression. #shameless #Twitter” [Twitter, 7/8/22]