In the following press release just sent out by the United States Concealed Carry Association, USCCA boss Tim Schmidt says he’s perplexed by the NRA’s move to ban his organization from NRA Annual Meeting and Expo participation next week. We’re guessing he knows exactly why the NRA doesn’t want him there. We’ve reached out the NRA for comment and will updated this if we get anything.

Potentially Fearing Competition, the National Rifle Association Disinvites US Concealed Carry Association from Annual Meeting and Exhibits
USCCA Will Continue to Support NRA’s Mission

West Bend, WI – The United States Concealed Carry Association (USCCA) today announced that the National Rifle Association (NRA) has disinvited the organization from its 2017 Annual Meetings & Exhibits and the 2018 Great American Outdoor Show because of “concerns regarding its programs.”

The move shocked the leadership of the USCCA because they were given less than two weeks notice that they had been banned from the annual show, even though they had attended for the past several years. This decision also came as a surprise because over the past two months, the leadership from the NRA and the USCCA met twice to discuss the shared goal of the two organizations in support of the Second Amendment.

In a note sent to millions of USCCA supporters, Founder and President Tim Schmidt said that even though the NRA might be fearing the competition, USCCA will still support the NRA’s efforts to protect the Second Amendment.

“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little perplexed myself. The truth is, I don’t really know the motive behind the NRA’s move. I mean, the USCCA has ALWAYS had a great relationship with the NRA. And the way I see it, we’re all in this together,” Schmidt said.

“If I had to guess, I’d say that perhaps this is a strategic business maneuver,” added Schmidt. “I mean, the concealed carry market has really exploded over the last decade — just look at how long the USCCA has been around! Maybe the NRA recognizes us as the frontrunner in providing the absolute best education, training and self-defense insurance in the industry. And perhaps they’re starting to see us less as a partner and more as a competitor.”

“As much as it sort of stings that we got ‘booted’ from the NRA Show, I believe that this sort of competition is a good, healthy and even exciting thing — especially from a goliath like the NRA.”

“Whether or not the NRA supports us, we will continue to support them,” Schmidt said. “We will continue to believe in their mission. We will continue to respect the historical significance of what they have done to preserve and protect our God-given rights. And we will always support their legislative and lobbying efforts. I personally will continue to donate to the NRA as a proud Lifetime Member.”

The U.S. Concealed Carry Association (USCCA) provides education, training and self-defense insurance to responsible American gun owners. Headquartered in West Bend, WI, the USCCA is the largest and fastest-growing, member-owned, private association whose sole focus is the responsibly armed American.

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67 Responses to Competitors Not Admitted: NRA Bans USCCA from Next Week’s Annual Meeting

    • I have no idea what “POTG” means but unless you behead innocent people you’re nothing like jihadists. Use your brain.

      • People Of The Gun

        The use of “Jihadi” is metaphorical, meaning the using of a concept, generally understood, to highlight similarities (not congruency) between one concept and another. That is, Jihadis hate anyone, including all other mohamedians, who does not precisely believe the way any particular Jihadi believes.

        Think about it.

  1. I’m an NRA member. I asked for info from Timmy FIVE years ago and received an ENDLESS spam stream. Can’t take a hint Timmy? I am getting a CCL and I won’t use USCCA. Ever…

    • Wow, two big gun organizations and both spam their members!
      Who would have thought it?
      Get over it. Get a spam filter.

      • I have NEVER been a member of USCCA. I’m cool with NRA bombardment. I just ignore it. They played a huge part in electing Donnie.Get over yourself.

        • Have belonged to the USCCA for years and will continue to, would not want to be without their legal protection. However, I think that my NRA membership will be allowed to lapse.

        • I’ve been a member of both the NRA and the USCCA for a very long time, and always will be. I sent the NRA a message requesting their reasoning behind the exclusion. The NRA is a member organization, so I don;t think it’s unfair to expect an explanation.

          The NRA leadership may have a good reason, so I would like to know what it is. This just doesn’t seem like the best time for the 2A organizations to be creating divisions.

    • USCCA’s format seems shady. You read through really long adds promising free stuff, then they hit you with the membership hard sell. I find it off putting.

    • lol thats funny… condering the ENDLESS STREAMS OF EMAIL AND POSTAL JUNKMAIL I receive on a weekly basis since letting my NRA membership lapse. I mean seriously, if you wanna get into a pissing match about who mails more, the NRA wins hands-down

    • I get NO SPAM from USCCA and get tons from the NRA (plus so many requests to re-new my membership that I ended up with TWO memberships for a while). I do not understand why all of you got off on this e-mail tangent about SPAM? This is all about ethics and proper business practices between our family members. If the NRA treats the USCCA like this; how will they treat me and the average NRA member? I called the NRA office on Monday and they played very, very dumb!!!!! I gave them until Friday to reply with their reason for their action. Since this is Friday and with no response from anyone at NRA, Monday will find me as: “No longer a member of the NRA”!!!! I’m that serious!!!! Shame on them.

  2. Wow, I belong to both NRA as a lifer for ever and USCCA for a couple years. I like both venues, I have insurance with both glubs I even advanced my membership as a Patroit NRA Lifer. I carry my shooting insurance with USCCA and love there maginzine. My guns are insured by NRA. What gives here politics? We the ppl need as many of these groups as possible. Oh well. Be safe out there.

    • Completely agree. I too am an NRA Life member & carry insurance with USCCA. They are both great organizations. At times like these we should work together against the anti gunners not against each other. Just because Trump is potus doesn’t mean the fight is over…. we have the ball now… time to playing offense!!!

      • I took my initial training from NRA instructors. I was an NRA instructor for ten years after that. The NRA training was never ideal, especially for self defense. There was essentially NO training available for carrying a gun until the “personal protection outside the home” course was introduced just a few years ago. That course was a total joke and concerned itself with CC only… sort of. Did you know that the ONLY CC method and “holster” presented or taught was purse carry? Seriously!

        And then the NRA set out to destroy the entire program, meddling badly with whatever success we had. No need to go over all that again here. One small proof? NRA instructors bailing out by the hundreds.

  3. Yes, I had to unsubscribe too. Just to much stuff coming from them. It is like a couple of the Second Amendment Foundation and Calguns foundation. If I gave them $25 each time they e-mailed me I wouldn’t have any money left.

    • All the NRA got from me were the annual dues, kind of annoyed by the constant begging for money. Love the USCCA and will stay with it, but not the NRA when my paid several years in advance membership expires.

  4. im gonna go out on a limb here and say most people of the gun are quite content to support these orgs but the less emails demanding our urgent attention, the happy level increases.

    • Yep. You’d think this orgs would take a hint and just limit it to:

      -1 e-mail digest each week

      -OR-

      -1 e-mail / paper mail a month

  5. I hear lots of complaints about the NRA, mainly about their fundraising solicitations.
    If you cannot contribute you might notify them not to call, instead of suspending your membership.
    As well, the NRA might be more effective if it concentrated more on outreach/ advertising than “preaching to the choir.”

  6. At this point, it looks like USCCA is taking the high road and exuding some class, which makes the NRA look like a bully.

    Bad PR move, NRA.

  7. I don’t have a dog in this fight. I’m a member of the Armed Citizens Legal Defense Network.

    I know the NRA used to “endorse”/promote/whatever Second Call Defense, which I found to be Amway of CCW insurance. Yes, Second Call is a good product, but my endorsement isn’t for sale for $.16 per month per signup under my referral.

    USCCA spams WAY too much, but they have a good product as well. I little pricey, in my opinion, but a good product.

    Does anyone know if “Carry Guard” is affiliated with Second Call Defense?

    John

    • Just joined the Armed Citizens Legal Defense Network myself this year. Great organization with realistic goals and legal liability training/information – as well as the non “insurance” legal assistance available. And all without endless “fund raising” and scare tactic mail or quisling participation in legislation.

      The Armed Citizens Legal Defense Network does not replace the NRA training program, by any means, and I sure wish the NRA hadn’t destroyed theirs, poor as it was in many ways.

      Hopefully, another organization will come along and build a good training platform, and find volunteers to staff it. I’d come out of retirement for something like that. But I’m done with the NRA – root and branch.

  8. That’s not all. They’ve banned attorney Andrew Branca, too. Despite the fact that he’s an NRA Life-Benefactor member, and has been a Life Member and NRA Instructor for more than two decades, since he began to do work with USCCA he can no longer get speaking opportunities at NRA events, the NRA Store has ceased carrying his book (The Law of Self Defense, 3rd Edition), he can no longer obtain media credentials for the NRA Annual Meeting, and his efforts to secure a booth at the NRA Annual Meeting could not get a phone call or email returned.

    http://blog.lawofselfdefense.com/2017/04/21/nra-bans-uscca-from-annual-meeting/

    Bad form, NRA!

    • Branca is top notch. So are they going to ban Mark Walters too?
      I will be listening to Armed American Radio Sunday night at 7:00 p.m. CDL to find out!

  9. Very disappointing news.
    Not a USCCA member; yet still get a lot of SPAM from them.
    Life NRA member; and get a lot of SPAM form them.

    I don’t think we should trash one-another in the PotG community over SPAM, soliciting for donations or differences in policy. If USCAA and NRA compete on training programs or training philosophy, that’s good; competition makes us stronger.

    There is room for disagreement over policies as to how to pursue goals; and room for differences over goals. We can constructively debate these issues. However, to exclude fellowship by baring attendance or exhibiting is destructive. Especially so when the largest organization does it.

  10. I am a member of both. I have very seldom received USCCA mailings, except for their fine magazine, whereas I receive NRA junk mail 2-3 times per week. (Might need to check contact options). Nevertheless, I expressed my outrage to the NRA for splitting the POTG community over (what?). Hopefully NRA will reconsider as you will not find a finer organization than USCCA to represent the CCW community. While I subscribe to their insurance, I also am covered nicely by the Armed Citizens Legal Defense fund. (Belts and Suspenders!). However, if NRA persists in these childish pursuits, I will gladly withdraw from the NRA organization.

    • ” you will not find a finer organization than USCCA to represent the CCW community.” Totally agree, the best organization out there for people who CCW. Great legal protection (they do what they say they are going to do) and a great magazine that just keeps getting better; every issue is great & the next one better. Was an early member of the USCCA and I am glad that I found them. As far as so called ‘SPAM’ from the USCCA, I don’t see what you mean. They promote and advertise their company with effective advertising, what’s wrong with that? Isn’t that how a lot of successful companies have grown? Even though Tim is still going to support the NRA, my membership will just be allowed to expire, I’m done.

  11. All my junk mailings from NRA will be returned with the following note scrawled on it: SCREW YOU NRA FOR BANNING USCCA. It will be worth the price of a stamp.

  12. USCCA is selling insurance or maybe not. While they reference membership providing self defense defense insurance, they are very clear with their disclaimer that they’re not an insurance company.

    “The information on this website or generated by representatives of Delta Defense, LLC or USCCA, Inc. related to the Self-Defense SHIELD are not offers to sell insurance. Delta Defense, LLC and USCCA, Inc. are not insurance companies, insurance agents, or involved in the sale of insurance products. All coverages are subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions of the actual USCCA, Inc. insurance policy.”

    So, this is pretty suspect. What if 5 or 6 claims are filed in a few months. How are they going to pay out the up to $1,000,000 per defense that they claim to offer. While it seems that the main reason to join USCCA is this maybe or maybe not insurance program they offer, their disclaimer makes it clear that they very well may refuse your claim and never pay out anything.

    This whole model they’re putting forth, and they way there have been pushing it at the Great American Outdoors Show (I’ve been there every year since the NRA took over) certainly looks like they’re offering unlicensed insurance that’s not backed up by anything.

    I think the NRA is right to cut ties with them until they stop advertising membership as CCW insurance.

    • I don’t think you don’t want them to be “insurance” as such because they would be regulated (or regulated more) by the state.

    • No company can give you insurance money “before” you go to trial. Its against the law. They legally can’t call it insurance either. I’m not member of Second Call Defense. But they explain that legally you can’t have “insurance” money to pay for your legal defense.
      Insurance is paid only after you are found not guilty. These companies are structured so legally they can pay to defend you before a trial. Everyone should read the literature very carefully and ask questions before signing up for any service.

      • I’m reading through USCCA’s materials and they are totally contradictory to what you’re saying. So either USCCA is misleading in their materials or you are just making things up and posting them as fact. So which one is it?

    • As I learned with GEICO back in the 1970s, if you are insured as a member, and the organization has financial problems, ALL members share in the responsibility to meet shortfalls. That could be VERY costly on a personal level. It’s a good way to lose a home, gun collection, etc.

    • Like most, USCCA pays the vast majority of coverage after an acquittal. Yeah, they pay $5 or 10k ahead of time (or $20 for the really $$ coverage), but the rest comes AFTER acquittal.

      Most people go with their lower lever plans. The odds of 5 people simultaneously needing a million in coverage is somewhere below the odds of Barack Obama coming to love America and converting to Christianity. A million dollar case would be spread over months and months. Just look at George Zimmerman.

      John

  13. I will have to listen to Mark Walters on Armed American Radio, he works for the USCCA, to hear what he has to say if anything. I haven’t decided what gunfighter insurance I will get yet.

  14. Between emails, snail mail, and phone calls all asking for more money, and using scare tactics to push their fund raising, the NRA, whose base agenda I fully support, overkills. They turn people off when they should be attracting people. Meanwhile, aside from their magazine, I rarely hear from USCCA.

    The present conduct of the NRA is a lot like AARP… which I dropped because of their mailings and other things driving me nuts. AARP no longer addressed my concerns and sided with anti-gun people.

    The NRA is actually a small organization with only 5 million members… less than 2% of the population. I know there are far more people than that who share the NRA’s agenda of preserving our constitutional rights. After all, it is estimated that 38 percent of households reported owning at least one firearm. The latest General Social Survey found that 32 percent of Americans (roughly 102,048 people) either own a firearm themselves or live with someone who does. That’s a lot of people sharing the same goals as the NRA but not being members. So, where are they? They belong to the estimated 14,000 NRA affiliated gun clubs and thousand of non-affiliated associations like USCCA. I have often wondered why all the individual organizations do not band together to present a united front. As it is, the public, especially the anti-gun people, only sees the NRA. There are many liberals who own guns right here in California who believe in the 2nd Amendment but reject the NRA because they see the NRA as a conservative organization. So, our side loses their support. All those liberal gun owners could help carry the day in places like California if the NRA was more open to organizations like the USCCA.

  15. Constant, unrelenting, annoying spam from the CCW people. I unsubscribed and am glad the NRA is cutting ties with them.

    -NRA member

      • I too will allow my NRA membership to end and no renewal. Nothing but solicitations via snail mail, email, and phone calls. They are constantly begging for money to fight off the evil gun haters. I’ve been a member of the USCCA for 2 years and have read and participated in several training and awareness publications. I pay for my yearly membership and get access to a wealth of very useful information. The choice is easy – NRA seems to be more interested in protecting the arms industry than gun owners. I think the NRA has lost its way.

        • “Nothing but solicitations via snail mail, email, and phone calls.” This really sums it up; when I think of all the $ spent sending (especially) ‘snail mail’, I think wasted $.

  16. I’ve been an NRA member for many years. I’m now an Endowment Life member. I RARELY hear from the NRA asking for donations. Very rarely. I can’t remember the last time I got a solicitation from them.

  17. I debated for quite some time before my wife
    and me became lifetime members of the Gun
    Owners of America.

    The NRA has had to many issues and ties with all
    too many members of the DC Beltway elites.

    Furthermore, they have too many members
    and money for my liking. The banning of the
    USCCA is no surprise to me as the NRA has done
    other numinous things to my dissatisfaction.

    More than another firearm organization, the GOOA
    drove Piers Morgan off CNN (classic gun hater) and
    back to gunless Britain.

    The NRA has grown to fat and lazy for my preference.

  18. I don’t trust any organization that central marketing concept is paid celebrity endorsement. USCCA has to be spending MILLIONS and what does the “member” get for this expenditure?

    • What ‘paid celebrity endorsement’ are you talking about? Been a USCCA member from early on, have never see any celebrity endorsement ads.

  19. I’m a member of both groups, and a Benefactor Life member of NRA, and I get far more spam from NRA than USCCA. NRA never lets up on their endless pressure to send more money, and the only training they have to offer is very basic. USCCA offers a much broader training program, and far more in depth. Both groups are much needed today, and there is plenty of room for both. NRA’s decision is inexcusable, but I will continue to support both NRA and USCCA.

  20. Dropped out of the NRA years ago when they caved in on the COP Killer Bullet Ban and started compromising on other Critical Gun Issues. I will not be signing up as a NRA member again.

  21. Evidently there are anti and/or uninformed people incorrectly commenting on the USCCA. It’s a great outfit and deliver on their promises. Keep in mind that the coverage is for ANY weapon, body parts included. Also does not matter if you are involved in another self defense incident later on (think retaliation). There are video testimonials of USCCA members having to use their coverage. (Due to privacy concerns, etc., confidential information is not blabbed all over the place). One guy only belonged for less than a month; some never even drew their weapon and were arrested, still covered. Other cases where multiple perps hit. Keep in mind a civil suit is also covered (great for places without CD). Until proven otherwise, the USCCA is a stand up organization No, I don’t work for them, just a satisfied member.

  22. I find, (pretty hard not to)that both of these organizations really need to find a way to make money without begging us for it. There’s nothing more annoying than joining an organization for what you think are the correct reasons and finding out all they really want is your email address and to be bigger (financially) than the other one. I am incredibly annoyed by “Timmy’s” constant (on his knees) begging for every penny we may give him. When that doesn’t work he sells video crap! Does everyone realize just how many new CCW holders think that USCCA’s videos are all you need to know what is needed to use a firearm to PROTECT LIFE! Tim is doing a great disservice to the people who believe his hype that his videos are the be all to end all. I’ve been shooting for over 60yrs and have not stopped taking REAL classes. Do your homework, go where the real experts are, and don’t think firearms are toys. Tim has caused people to think that what’s going on in the mirror is what will happen in a real interaction. The NRA at least does enormous lobbying to protect our 2nd Amendment Rights. Does the USCCA? I believe, and I belong to both, that the guys from USCCA just sit around thinking of new ways to convince us to buy what they’re selling. However, take a serious look at their insurance. That does appear to be a good deal. I agree with insuring your firearm’s and ancillary equipment with the NRA.
    Good luck all of you, and please, stay safe!

  23. I am an NRA life member, as is my wife, and daughter, I do however think the NRA is being a bully in this situation, I will still support them but I wish they were not so petty!
    Sounds like the good old boy network of many years ago might need to be knocked off their feet again by us peon members.

  24. I believe that the NRA is doing what it wants and that’s its prerogative. I belong to both and have been shooting for over 60yrs. I think Tim has become a salesman and video teacher (so he thinks) however what the very young CCW holders who are buying and studying his videos, I’m afraid think that is how things will happen in real life. Real life is not happening in a mirror. It happens in ways that are completely unpredictable. I still take real life training and I know things could sadly happen in a way I would never expect. We really must work together on keeping our 2nd Amendment Rights. The NRA often and regularly lobbies for those rights. Tim and the USCCA make good insurance available for the person. The NRA makes great insurance available for firearms and their ancillary products. I think Tim should spend more time lobbying than selling. I read Tim’s statement and found that he spoke from both sides of his mouth. The NRA knows what they’re doing. The USCCA is still finding it’s way. I wish the USCCA would stop sending me unlimited emails attempting to sell me things. Tim is a clever business man. My advice is just don’t believe the hard sell. Let’s stick together and try not to argue. Please be safe!

  25. What you’re seeing here is organizational politics and competitive market forces at play. Unfortunately, no companies or organizations are immune from looking to self-preservation as their first priority, regardless of industry or cause. The NRA likely sees USCCA as a potential competitor and possibly a growing voice in the room of gun rights.

    NRA is no different than any other organization in terms of needing to ensure its own survival, strength, and influence. Even if it’s at the cost of other organizations furthering the same cause. This move doesn’t have anything to do with supporting or not supporting gun rights, it’s simple business. When a competitor moves into your space, you work to preserve market share by any means necessary.

  26. Peter et al.
    As you wrote – a real life experience in totally unpredictable. Therefore all good training, A good video training program (such as the USCCA’s) reinforced by actual practice and on top of that taking real life training is the best way to go in my opinion. No training, no matter how long and how intense of how many moves learned, will cover all possible self-defense scenarios.The purpose of the training, including video, is to create muscle memory and get the brain to be able to effectively adapt, key word here – Adapt, to the actual circumstances of the engagement.

    NRA move on USCCA – Very disappointing!

  27. I dropped my membership in USCCA because of the unrelenting requests and SPAM like advertisements. Up to several a week. I like their premise but I got weary of the commercial requests. They out shadowed the NRA SPAM like requests for increased support.

  28. Look, this is an NRA convention, so while I don’t like how it was handled, I can certainly understand their reasoning, and I’m a USCCA member. I’m pretty certain Pepsi wouldn’t let Coke have a booth at THEIR convention (if there was such a thing). In any event, competition is almost always a good thing. Hopefully all the CC legal products will be better for it.

    And for those complaining about SPAM from either entity….Good grief. Get a SPAM filter and/or unsubscribe. It’s 2017 already.

    • “Look, this is an NRA convention….Pepsi wouldn’t let Coke have a booth at THEIR convention”

      I concatenated the sentences on purpose. If NRA allows any booth for any non-NRA vendor or affiliate, USCCA should have been welcomed. If Pepsi hosted a “carbonated drink convention”, Pepsi would be due ridicule and criticism if Pepsi would not allow Coke to have a booth.

      While not expert on NRA or USCCA (or any other pro-gun organization), from what is presented here, I do not find a “Coke booth at a Pepsi convention” situation.

      • If you compare the NRA legal protection services to that of the USCCA, the NRA comes out on the very short side for more money. So it seems it is Coke vs Pepsi; the USCCA trumps the NRA. I belong to both.

        • “So it seems it is Coke vs Pepsi; the USCCA trumps the NRA.”

          If support for the rights of gun owners is a zero-sum game, we are lost.

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