Delta Will Review 'Politically Divisive' Discounts After NRA Fallout

Delta Will Review 'Politically Divisive' Discounts After NRA Fallout

Georgia Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle slammed Delta's decision to punish members of the National Rifle Association following the airline's decision to remove the discount, saying "We can not continue to allow large companies to treat conservatives differently than other customers".

"I'm exhausted of conservatives being kicked around on our values and it's time that we stand up and fight and show corporations that conservative values are important", Cagle said Monday afternoon. "Our inclusive, vibrant community helps make Orlando a wonderful place to live and do business, and our quality of life is second to none". But it pulled the offer on Saturday, under public pressure after 17 people were shot to death at a high school in Florida.

CEO Ed Bastian said in a memo to employees Friday that the company's goal was to "remain neutral" in the debate over guns. If something like lawmakers reneging on a tax break promise can happen to Delta, which is as iconic in this state as red clay, it could be even worse for a newcomer to town, especially since their Atlanta roots would be shallower than those of your average Georgia pine tree.

But business watchers both inside and outside the state feel the Delta vote may just have eliminated Atlanta from the Amazon headquarters sweepstakes. "They could certainly say that this would be a reason to look elsewhere".

"Corporations can not attack conservatives and expect us not to fight back", he said. He defended the move Friday.

"That is not the case", Mr. Bastian wrote. "We don't focus on our own knee-jerk political reactions".

In response, he suggested cutting from the state's budget a proposed jet fuel tax break that wound have saved Delta tens of millions of dollars. GOP House Speaker David Ralston called it "not one of our finer days" when the firestorm erupted Monday.

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Georgia's Republican governor, Nathan Deal, didn't seem concerned that the company would be enticed to leave.

The Republican-controlled Georgia legislature's decision to punish Delta constitutes "the most stinging punishment that America's pro-gun forces have leveled so far" against corporations that have distanced themselves from the NRA, the New York Times reported Thursday. But to do it after the Parkland shooting, in a political context in which student spokesmen are pushing for aggressive gun regulations while accusing the NRA and the Republicans to whom it donates of killing children is, emphatically, taking a side in the broader debate. "The jobs thing now is pushed to the back".

Deal, who said an estimated $5.2 billion in overall tax savings was too important to sacrifice, swiftly signed the measure into law Friday.

Thursday, Georgia lawmakers passed House Bill 918 by overwhelming margins after removing the exemptions.

The airlines confirmed to USA Today they've sold just 13 NRA-discounted tickets, meaning each ticket has now cost the airline roughly $3 million in tax credits. He declined to provide a list of potentially divisive groups with access to discounted fares. Earlier this week, Walmart, Dick's Sporting Goods and Kroger said they would limit firearms sales.

Delta has now joined several other organisations which have ended their aid to the NRA members following the February 18 incident.

The extent of the backlash Georgia might face from businesses is unclear. How many people do we think the NRA employees in Georgia?