Delta Gave Free Upgrades to GOP For Tax Break
Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal (R) signed into law a major tax break for Delta Airlines that would enable it to purchase jet fuel at a lower rate. An investigation by Atlanta’s WSB-TV found that Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle (R) and five Republican leaders in the legislature were given free “upgrades to platinum or gold frequent flyer status” by Delta, which include access to special security lines, far more frequent flyer miles, and free upgrades to first class in some circumstances.
While Delta did register the upgrades as campaign contributions, the station argues that the company undervalued them. Delta said the upgrades were worth $1,600-$2,400, but renowned consumer reporter Clark Howard said the actual value of the upgrades was closer to $10,000-$15,000 a year, and that they should be registered as gifts from lobbyists, not simple contributions.
(Source: ThinkProgress.org and WSB-TV)