The Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch has an editorial celebrating a deal for a new data center between Amazon and the state of Ohio, which is led by a Republican governor, John Kasich: "The state has approved tax incentives for the project valued at an estimated $81 million. That isn't a handout, but a benefit that Amazon will earn as it actually invests and creates jobs here."
When advocates of a special tax break for a big business need to specify or insist that it "isn't a handout," it's usually a pretty good indication that it is precisely that. I don't fault Amazon for using the competition between states to try to get the best deal it can to increase profits for its shareholders and lower costs for customers. But a one-low-tax-rate-for-everyone approach is, for a whole lot of reasons, preferable to these kinds of special deals, regardless of whether the word used to describe the special deals is "benefit" or "handout."