Reprinted with permission from AlterNet.
Conservatives are growing increasingly furious over companies like Delta Airlines distancing themselves from the National Rifle Association. On Monday, one Republican official vowed to “kill” any legislation that would benefit Delta as far as tax breaks are concerned. Georgia’s lieutenant governor Casey Cagle threatened Delta by saying he would nix a tax break for the airline company for its position on the NRA. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, such a fuel tax exemption could save Delta at least $40 million.
Shortly after the school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that took the lives of 17 people, Delta said it was “reaching out to the NRA to let them know we will be ending their contract for discounted rates through our group travel program.” The company declared this decision on Twitter on Saturday and added that it would request the association “remove our information from their website.”
The Los Angeles Times reported that Delta had received significant pressure, after the shooting, from gun control activists who demanded the company reconsider its discount contract with NRA members.
On Monday, Cagle tweeted that he “will kill any tax legislation that benefits @Delta unless the company changes its position and fully reinstates its relationship with @NRA. Corporations cannot attack conservatives and expect us not to fight back.” In a previous tweet, Cagle called for more focus on mental health programs in the country as opposed to ending discount programs with NRA members. “I’m a lifelong member of the NRA and a strong supporter of the law-abiding citizens’ Second Amendment rights,” the Georgian legislator said.
“Like all Americans, I’m horrified by the mass shootings we’ve witnessed,” the conservative lawmaker went on. “If corporate America wants to make a positive difference on gun violence, it should donate a portion of its profits to mental health treatments and school safety initiatives. They should put their money where their mouth is instead of engaging in viewpoint discrimination against conservatives and law-abiding gun owners.”
Ironically, Cagle failed to realize that Delta was indeed putting its money where its mouth was by snuffing out its discount program with NRA members.
Delta isn’t alone in cutting corporate ties with the NRA. The company is joined by other massive business entities like MetLife, Symantec, United Airlines, Allied, and others in stepping away from affiliate and discount programs with the NRA. A list created by CNN Money actually shows how, at this moment, at least 15 companies have disassociated themselves with America’s most potent gun lobby.