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Gubernatorial candidate Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle speaks at town hall

EVANS, Ga. (WJBF) - Georgia Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle brought his campaign for governor to Columbia County Thursday night. He spoke during a town hall style gathering at That Flippin' Egg in Evans. This comes has he makes national headlines for his showdown with Delta Airlines over its cutting ties with the NRA.

More than a hundred people came out, so it dosen't seem like the controversy kept people home.

From the national stage, to a local stage right here in the CSRA, Lietenant Gov. Casey Cagle spoke to Georgians about why he should be the next governor.

"I'm running to make a difference," he said.

He has ambitious goals: 500,000 new jobs in four years, pulling Georgians out of poverty, developing infrastructure for rural broadband, improving rural healthcare, and creating more choices when it comes to education.

"I will be a governor that's going to be committed to economic prosperity, recruiting the kind of jobs that we want here in the state," Cagle said.

But what he's known for right now around the country is his reaction against Delta removing a discount on NRA members' flights to their annual meeting. A Delta spokeswoman told the AJC Friday that the NRA discount had been used for only 13 tickets.

In the press release announcing the severance of the tie with NRA, Delta says the decision reflects the airline's neutral state in the current national debate over gun control amid recent school shootings.

"Delta obviously engaged in a way that not only offended me as a conservative, but other conservatives," Cagle said.

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. He succeeded, and the bill passed overwhelmingly in the house and senate. Gov. Deal signed the bill Friday. He had earlier called the issue "an unbecoming squabble."

"Please understand that this is not at all motivated from the position of the NRA," Cagle said. "My position is a position of principle, and as it pertains to the issue at hand, had Delta or any other corporation suspended that benefit to all organizations, we wouldn't be in this discussion. But instead they targeted a specific membership organization, and I just find that to be wrong."

He told us he is proud of his lifelong membership in the NRA. We asked if they were financially supporting his campaign, and he said no.

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