Published: Tue, March 06, 2018
Money | By Hannah Jacobs

Delta, entangled in NRA controversy, will end discounts for 'politically divisive' groups

Delta, entangled in NRA controversy, will end discounts for 'politically divisive' groups

After Delta announced it was cutting ties with the NRA, it took pro-gun Republicans just days to make good on their threats by passing a sweeping tax bill - minus the jet fuel tax break.

"If Delta isn't looking to move and someone else is, then maybe we can pull them in and bring jobs to our state", he said. "We are called on to listen to all voices and draft policies to benefit Georgia". A number of US companies have rescinded discounts previously offered to NRA members.

Deal also said he was committed to "finding a pathway forward" for the Delta tax break, but Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp said the state should instead reject the perk for airlines in favor of creating a sales tax holiday for buyers of guns, ammunition, holsters and safes where guns can be stored.

Last Saturday, Delta canceled a one-time discount it had offered to NRA members, saying the discount could have been seen "as Delta implicitly endorsing" the NRA. That is not the case.


But "Our decision was not made for economic gain and our values are not for sale", Bastian writes.

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

"I hope they are better at flying airplanes than timing P.R. announcements", Ralston said.

Bastian cited the NRA's "controversial statements" in the wake of the deadly shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, which left 17 students and staff members dead.


Delta said it would review all of its partnerships and end all politically charged affiliations. A few hours after the vote, Georgia Congressman John Lewis tweeted simply "I stand with Delta". Delta also secured another win in getting Qatar Airways to agree to open its books, after repeated complaints that the airline and two other Middle Eastern airlines receive government subsidies that make it hard for USA carriers to compete.

After Georgia Republicans threatened to remove the tax break, the governors of NY and Virginia invited Delta to move its headquarters to their states. But GOP lawmakers' willingness to use public money to try to intimidate corporations could damage Georgia's ability to attract new industry - including Amazon, which recently named metro Atlanta a finalist for its coveted second headquarters. He is a great friend to Delta.

In his memo Friday, Bastian wrote: "None of this changes the fact that our home is Atlanta and we are proud and honored to locate our headquarters here".

The Delta provision barely came up Thursday in either legislative chamber during debate on the underlying tax bill, designed in part to give back to Georgia taxpayers $5.2 billion in extra state revenue expected over the next five years because of the recent federal tax overhaul.


He added: "And we are supporters of the 2nd Amendment, just as we embrace the entire Constitution of the United States".

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