Utah attorney general candidate David Leavitt is a prosecutor by day, Delta baggage handler by night
(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) David Leavitt Candidate for Utah Attorney General for the Republican Primary joins candidate Sean Reyes in a debate at KUED, Tuesday, June 2, 2020.
He is the Utah County attorney and a Republican candidate to be the state attorney general.
But David Leavitt has another job.
He helps load luggage on planes for Delta. Really.
Leavitt has been working as a ramp agent for the airline for the past four years so he could get free flights as part of the company’s benefits. He says he has to work at least 150 hours each year to receive the benefits — hours that he says he does on Saturdays or in the evenings when he’s free. He makes about $8.50 an hour, he said, but the free flights extend to his entire family.
“I’m not doing it for the paycheck,” he said. “It was creating such amazing memories for our family because we would go to Paris for the weekend. It has become a part of my family culture.”
Leavitt, who donated $300,000 to his own campaign for attorney general
, said Thursday that he contemplated quitting the airline job when he was elected Utah County attorney in 2018.
At that time, he thought about juggling his new job while he was also a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ famed Tabernacle Choir and continuing to work his part-time gig deicing planes and driving baggage carts. One of them had to go.
Leavitt talked about his part-time job Thursday with The Salt Lake Tribune. But he said it’s been known in Utah County for some time.
He said he kept it quiet in the first month or two after he was elected, but attorneys in his office know about it and the Utah County sheriff is aware.
"It's not a secret," he said.
Leavitt also included it on his campaign disclosure. He listed his employers as Utah County and Delta Air Lines and wrote, “I work 150 hours a year as a seasonal ramp agent.”
Leavitt, who also previously served as Juab County attorney, is the brother of former Utah Gov. Mike Leavitt and their family has a number of businesses largely involving insurance and real estate. He listed 14 companies in which he is an owner or officer, two of which pay him, beyond the checks he receives from Utah County and Delta.
Leavitt said his part-time job has influenced his work as a prosecutor and allowed him to interact with co-workers whom he would not have met in his day job.
“I signed up to try to do these flight benefits," he said, “but it unwittingly became a fairly significant part of my life.”
He said he hasn’t worked a shift there in about six weeks, as his campaign against incumbent Attorney General Sean Reyes heated up and he recovered from having the coronavirus.
But would he give it all up if he were elected attorney general?
He said, “I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it."