Musk’s SpaceX has spent years working with the U.S. government to support NASA’s historic return to crewed space flight from America. The historic Demo-2 mission will be the first time since 2011 that astronauts have made the journey into space from U.S. soil.
The initial launch of the Demo-2 mission was originally scheduled for Wednesday but scrubbed because of unfavorable weather conditions. SpaceX and NASA will try again on Saturday. The launch is scheduled for 3:22 p.m. EDT.
At Florida’s Kennedy Space Center on Wednesday Trump praised the SpaceX founder and CEO, saying that he’s been “a friend of mine for a long time.”
In January, Trump’s praise of Musk was even more glowing, calling him “one of our great geniuses” when speaking to CNBC at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
SpaceX is a common ground for the two national figures.
“The best minds are at companies where their talents can come to fruition. Musk’s SpaceX is one of those companies. Here … his and Donald Trump’s interests coincide,” Bonner Cohen, a senior fellow at the National Center for Public Policy Research (NCPPR), told Fox News.
But a much more politically polarizing issue has also become a common cause. It began earlier this month when Musk was sparring with local Alameda County officials in an attempt to reopen the Tesla plant in Fremont, Calif.
In a tweet, Musk said, “This is the final straw” and threatened to move Tesla’s headquarters from California to Texas or Nevada.
Trump offered his support, tweeting, “California should let Tesla & @elonmusk open the plant, NOW. It can be done Fast & Safely!” And Musk responded, “Thank you!”
“Musk may also be angling to get Trump to go along with extending federal tax credits for purchasers of EVs [electric vehicles],” Bonner said. “The $7,500 per-purchaser tax credit has already run out for Tesla, and Musk, along with other EV manufacturers, would love to see it reinstated.”
The truth is, Musk and Trump are only aligned on a few narrow issues. Electric vehicles being a good example of where the two part ways.
Musk is on the side of anti-fossil-fuel groups. “Trump, needless to say, will have nothing to do with this,” Bonner said.
But Musk stirred the pot again this month, triggering speculation about a new conservative bent when he cryptically tweeted, “Take the red pill.”
A line from the 1999 movie “The Matrix,” “Take the red pill” has become slang for people abandoning liberalism for conservative values.
Fox News’ James Rogers and Frank Miles contributed to this article.