The Latest: Georgia Democrats say NRA controls state leaders - InfoNews

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The Latest: Georgia Democrats say NRA controls state leaders

FILE - In this Jan. 11, 2016, file photo, Georgia Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle speaks during a memorial ceremony on the first day of the legislative session at the state Capitol in Atlanta. Cagle on Monday, Feb. 26, 2018, threatened to prevent Delta Air Lines from getting a lucrative tax cut after the company ended its discount program with the National Rifle Association. Cagle, president of the state Senate and a leading candidate to succeed Gov. Nathan Deal, tweeted that he would use his position to kill a proposed sales tax exemption on jet fuel. (AP Photo/David Goldman, File)
February 26, 2018 - 6:33 PM

ATLANTA - The Latest on Delta's decision to cut marketing ties with the National Rifle Association (all times local):

7 p.m.

Georgia Democrats have blasted the state's lieutenant governor, saying his recent threat against Delta Air Lines for severing ties with the National Rifle Association is proof that Republican lawmakers are in the pocket of the gun lobby.

The statements come shortly after Lt. Gov Casey Cagle tweeted that he would use his position to kill a proposed sales tax exemption on jet fuel unless Delta reverses its position.

Priyanka Mantha, communications director for Democrat Stacey Abrams' gubernatorial campaign, said Cagle "would sacrifice thousands of jobs ... just to satisfy his buddies at the NRA."

Senate Minority Leader Steve Henson said Republican leaders had been arguing that the tax cuts were good for business and now were changing their tune because they are afraid of the NRA.

A spokesman for Cagle didn't immediately return a request for comment.

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6:20 p.m.

A Georgia senator has applauded the state's lieutenant governor for listening to what he says is the "vast majority" of Republican senators who want to quash a proposed jet fuel tax cut after Delta Air Lines ended its discount program with the National Rifle Association.

Sen. Michael Williams of Cumming says Delta's decision riled up the conservative base in the state. Using social media, Williams encouraged voters over the weekend to "lambast" Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle and Gov. Nathan Deal to kill the proposed tax exemption.

Williams, who is running against Cagle for governor, says that pressure helped get GOP lawmakers, including Cagle, to refuse to back the tax emption unless Delta reinstates its partnership with the NRA.

A spokesman for Cagle did not immediately return a request for comment.

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4 p.m.

The president of the Georgia Senate says he will prevent Delta Air Lines from receiving a lucrative tax cut unless it re-establishes its discount program with the National Rifle Association.

Republican Lt. Gov Casey Cagle, one of the leading candidates to succeed Gov. Nathan Deal, tweeted Monday afternoon that he would use his position to kill a proposed sales tax exemption on jet fuel.

That proposal is part of Deal's larger tax overhaul, which has passed the House and awaits Senate input.

Conservatives are angry at Delta for joining more than a dozen U.S. corporations that have ended partnerships with the NRA after a deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida.

Delta said in a statement that the company's decision "merely confirmed its neutral status" in the national debate over guns.

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1:30 p.m.

Delta's decision to cut marketing ties with the National Rifle Association has prompted some Georgia Republican lawmakers to question whether the Atlanta-based airline should get a tax cut on jet fuel.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that three GOP candidates for governor recently condemned Delta for joining more than a dozen U.S. corporations that have ended partnerships with the NRA after a deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida.

The news comes as Delta appeared close to convincing lawmakers to restore a lucrative sales tax exemption on jet fuel. That proposal is part of Gov. Nathan Deal's larger tax overhaul, which has passed the House and awaits Senate input.

Delta said in a news release that the company's decision "merely confirmed its neutral status" in the national debate over guns.

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This story has been corrected to show that a statement from Abrams actually came from her campaign's communications director.

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Information from: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, http://www.ajc.com

News from © The Associated Press, 2018
The Associated Press

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