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Elon Musk announces he will resign as Twitter CEO when he finds a replacement

By Sarah May on
 December 21, 2022

Twitter CEO Elon Musk announced on Tuesday evening that, as promised, he will abide by the results of a poll he posted on the social media platform he leads and will therefore resign from his position atop the company, as ABC News reports.

Musk's declaration, however, came with the caveat that his departure will not occur immediately and will come “as soon as I find someone foolish enough to take the job!”

Polling his future

In a surprise move, Musk had taken to Twitter to ask platform users to weigh in on his fate as CEO, stating definitively, “I will abide by the results of this poll.”

Indeed, the Twitterverse had no reason to doubt that he would follow through with his pledge, given his previous adherence to the outcome of a poll in which he asked for opinions on whether to reinstate former President Donald Trump's account on the platform.

As NBC News reported earlier this week, by the time Musk's employment poll closed on Monday morning, 17.5 million votes had been case, and 57.5% of respondents indicated their desire for the CEO's departure, with 42.5% standing in opposition to that outcome.

Though Musk did not immediately offer insight into the reasoning behind his poll, late Sunday evening he cautioned potential respondents, “As the saying goes, be careful what you wish, as you might get it.”

The mercurial billionaire then added, “Those who want power are the ones who least deserve it.”

Musk breaks silence

After briefly staying mum on the poll's results, Musk tweeted Tuesday that he would keep his word and resign from the top job at Twitter once a replacement was found.

“After that, I will just run the software & servers teams,” Musk added.

Kim Dotcom, controversial convicted fraudster and founder of file-sharing website Megaupload, asserted on Twitter that Musk's poll about his leadership role at Twitter was likely artificially manipulated by fake online accounts and nefarious governmental intent.

“Hey @elonmusk, it's unwise to run a poll like this when you are now deep state enemy #1. They have the biggest bot army on Twitter,” he explained. “I'm hoping that Elon did this poll as a honeypot to catch all the deep state bots.

“Interesting,” Musk succinctly replied.

Not so shocking after all

Though the idea that Musk would allow the world of netizens to determine his tenure at Twitter may have seemed shocking to some, as CNBC reported in November, the role of CEO is not necessarily something he covets.

In fact, in recent court testimony, Musk denied that he had ambitions to serve as the CEO of any company, including Twitter.

Specifically referencing the social media company he recent acquired, Musk declared, “I expect to reduce my time at Twitter and find somebody else to run Twitter over time,” a strategy in obvious keeping with his willingness to abide by Monday's poll results.

Conflicts of interest alleged

Another reason Musk may be somewhat eager to delegate Twitter CEO duties to someone else is that his simultaneous leadership of the social media platform and electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla has recently drawn serious scrutiny from Democrat Sen. Elizabeth Warren (MA), according to The Hill.

The lawmaker recently sent a detailed letter to Tesla board chair Dr. Robyn Denholm posing a series of concerns related to Musk's overlapping priorities and demanding answers to questions about how the interests of shareholders in the automaker are being protected.

Given the widespread hostility from the left to Musk's attempts to reshape Twitter in an anti-censorship mold and the specter of endless government probes into the intersection of his existing corporate roles, few would fault him from seeking to shed some of his current duties.