Airlines, hoteliers took sides in Arizona debate; more to come?

The debate and subsequent veto last week of an Arizona bill that some say would have protected religious freedom and others say would have legitimized discrimination against gay, lesbian and transgendered people brought even travel companies into the fray.


American Airlines, Marriott, Delta Air Lines and Southwest Airlines all called for the bill to go down in flames.

Delta issued a statement that said passage of the law, which is similar to one proposed in its home state of Georgia, violates Delta’s core values and would “cause significant harm to many people and result in job losses,” Travel Weekly reported.

Marriott put a finer point on it, saying it would have a “profound” negative effect on the hospitality business in Arizona and the state’s economy “for years to come.”American Airlines CEO Doug Parker wrote that he believed the law would be bad for business.

The debate is far from over. Similar bills or ballot initiatives are alive in Idaho, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, Oregon, and South Dakota in addition to Georgia.

Such bill have been defeated or withdrawn in Colorado, Kansas, Maine, Tennessee and Utah, according to CNN.

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Lisa Schwarz

About Lisa Schwarz

By day, I'm a St. Cloud Times editor guiding coverage of politics, government, public safety and business beats. By night, I'm leading the cubicle jailbreak as the Times Traveler. Follow me on Twitter at and on Facebook at
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