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Dan Z for TTAG
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NRA board member Todd Rathner has posted the following message on his Facebook page:

A message from the NRA’s current Officers and Past Presidents.

May 22, 2019

My Fellow NRA Member:

Since the NRA was founded almost 150 years ago, our adversaries have repeatedly tried to take us down. Today is no different. A recent burst of media claims the NRA is vulnerable, financially unstable, and weakened in its fight to defend the Second Amendment. Obviously intent on not letting the facts get in the way of a good story, most reports offer a distorted and inaccurate view of the NRA. As officers and past presidents of the NRA, we write today to set the record straight.

As you may know, we recently convened in Indianapolis for one of the largest NRA conventions in our history. More than 80,000 of our members showed up to gather as one NRA family – to support our Association and celebrate our nation’s constitutional freedoms. During our annual Members Meeting on April 27, some asked for greater insight into three issues: the NRA’s financial affairs, our direction and strategy, and the supervisory role being played by our board of directors. We had an open forum and spirited discussion.

Of course, our discussions were portrayed as a sort of family feud. (Infighting at the NRA – Chaos and Controversy!). At the NRA, we take pride in the fact that our Association is inclusive and invites the active participation of every member. Every member has an opportunity to voice any concern they may have at the Members Meeting. In fact, our greatest privilege is hearing from our members. Like many of you, that’s why we were at the Members Meeting in the first place and spent countless hours on the convention floor.

FACT: During a board of directors meeting on April 29, Wayne LaPierre was elected by acclamation to continue serving as our CEO and Executive Vice President. The board also unanimously elected Carolyn D. Meadows to serve as our new president.

Perhaps looking for a way to counter the narrative about a stronger, more unified NRA, questions have now conveniently surfaced about our financial situation and our standing in the regulatory arena. There also have been frequent attacks on Wayne’s personal character.

FACT: According to the NRA’s chief financial officer, we are on budget in 2019. The NRA is meeting all banking and supplier financial obligations and we continue to aggressively manage our cost structure to offset the orchestrated and calculated attacks against NRA’s finances in 2018. Put another way, our financial house is in order – we aren’t going away.

We have full confidence in the NRA’s accounting practices and commitment to good governance.

FACT: The Association’s financials are audited and its tax filings are verified by one of the most reputable firms in the world. Internally, the Association has a conflict of interest policy and, where appropriate, related-party transactions are reviewed and approved by the board’s Audit Committee.

Simply put, we are well-positioned on the regulatory front and poised to handle all challenges that confront us.

Personal attacks against the NRA’s leaders are nothing new. Recent ones have focused on wardrobe purchases and travel expenses incurred by Wayne. If members hear of an allegation, they can be assured that it has been or will be addressed by the appropriate committees within our board of directors.

FACT: We have committees in place to oversee issues relating to Accounting, Legal Affairs, and Ethics, among others – and every board member is invited to attend these meetings. Please remember that all of us are elected by you – our members. We are not elected by Wayne or anyone on the NRA executive team. We serve as your elected representatives.

FACT: Over the years, Wayne had been advised by the NRA’s advertising professionals to invest in his professional wardrobe due to his numerous public and media appearances. We understand that this was the same agency that facilitated the clothing purchases. What wasn’t as evident in this “disclosure” is that the clothing expenses referenced in media reports dated back to expenses from 15 years ago! To put it in perspective, over this time period, Wayne has participated in thousands of events and hundreds of TV appearances, and personally directed fundraising efforts that total in the hundreds of millions of dollars. In any event, this practice was discontinued some time ago.

FACT: The vast majority of the travel in question involved donor outreach, fundraising, and stakeholder engagement. As an example, The Wall Street Journal reported that a trip to Italy was “tied to a 2015 documentary feature on the Italian gun maker posted on NRATV.” Beretta, as you may know, is a major supporter of the NRA and our Second Amendment.

We are not inclined to further discuss unfounded attacks on our organization, political infighting, or a “weakened” NRA.

However, we will say this: Our adversaries will not divide us and any further discussion about the so-called “demise of the NRA” is only meant to distract us from our mission. This is how it goes when you stand on the bedrock of constitutional freedom – and represent the last line of defense against a campaign to take down the Second Amendment.

While board members may argue, and perhaps even disagree as to tactics, the support Wayne and the current leadership enjoys reflects our assessment of his past and future value to the association as well as our realization that our opponents know they have to take him down if they want to weaken the NRA.

As one NRA member recently said, the true story of the NRA won’t be found in today’s press clippings. It will be written in the history books.

Wayne has been standing shoulder-to-shoulder with all of us for most of his professional life. He has our support. A campaign to oust him failed – as the facts emerged, true motivations became apparent, and we agreed as to who should lead our fight for freedom. We are now moving forward.

FACT: We will confront our opponents, defend our values, and proudly continue our tradition as the greatest civil rights organization in the world.

Just like you, we care about the Second Amendment and our NRA. Just as you do, we know that our fights today are less for us and more for our children and our grandchildren. Just like you, we are all courageous foot soldiers in our fight for freedom. Every single one of us in this fight matters. The Second Amendment is where it is today because of all of OUR efforts. That’s why you matter to our cause and our Association.

We are the NRA. United we stand. And together, we’ll win.


Carolyn D. Meadows President
Charles L. Cotton First Vice President
Lt. Col. Willes K. Lee USA (Ret) Second Vice President

Allan D. Cors Past President
James W. Porter Past President
David A. Keene Past President
Ronald L. Schmeits Past President
John C. Sigler Past President
Sandra S. Froman Past President
Kayne B. Robinson Past President
Marion P. Hammer Past President
Robert K. Corbin Past President

UPDATE: This statement is now posted on the NRA’s website.

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  1. FACT: Wayne is overpaid and you are against bumpstocks. And support red flag laws

    FACT: I’m done supporting the nra until things change. At least get rid of cat lady in FL.

    FACT: way to much dead weight and incestuous relationships. Find cheaper attorneys. Like only the $1000 an hour ones.

    • Aside from the lies already pointed out in the letter in regards to the “open discussion” – it doesn’t address other expenses like the apartment for an intern. I’m not suggesting there was some boot knocking per se (but it smells like it) but something is off there, and paid for with our Money.

  2. Glad to hear all is well and that the NRA is fully funded. But then, I’m a bit confused as to why last month’s issue of American Rifleman had a piece telling me that the NRA was in a dire need of funding, and that without my next contribution the NRA could soon vanish!

    • Exactly what I was going to say. It isn’t the enemies of the NRA that send me emails and letters begging for money, claiming that at there is an imminent an dire need of finances. It’s not the enemies of the NRA that’s putting out press releases about how it’s suing it’s own vendor longtime PR vendor, and it’s not the enemies of the NRA that’s told it’s members to keep hiring that same vendor for over a decade. It isn’t the enemies of the NRA telling me that the cost of litigation is an imminent threat to the solvency of the NRA.
      But now you say everything’s fine?
      Ms. Meadows, where you lying then, or are you lying now?

      • Yes to both, she was both lying then and now. And like all political critters she assumes the masses are too stupid to notice and will keep sending money because of the scare tactics.

    • At this point no one gives a fuck including me if nra exists anymore, they fucked people who gave them money and they sucked the atfs nutsack with bumpstock bans, machinegun bans etc.

      • But, his salary is guaranteed for life, regardless of his employment with the NRA. They still need to raise that money.

  3. Thank you sir. I have been a life member since 1964 and have and will support the NRA a well as the 2nd amendment. I said exactly what you said to many many people. Again thanks for the comment!!!

    • It is certainly your privilege to support both the NRA and the Second Amendment — although I admit I find it hard to understand why you would be supporting both opposing sides of the gun control debate.

      The NRA is not, and never has been, a pro-2A or pro-RKBA organization.

      The NRA first discovered the 2nd Amendment shortly after pushing through the Gun Control Act of 1968. Unfortunately they discovered it, not as a guiding principle, but merely as a recruiting and fund raising tool.

      The Republican hat trick of 2016, capturing the White House and both houses of congress, was the NRA’s worst nightmare — suddenly millions of gun owners were relieved to know their rights wouldn’t be attacked at the federal level. For gun owners that was good news — but for the NRA and Ackerman McQueen it meant the deluge of dollars was drying up.

  4. “Personal attacks against the NRA’s leaders are nothing new. Recent ones have focused on wardrobe purchases and travel expenses incurred by Wayne.”

    He blew 13,000 dollars (289 40$ annual memberships) on a smoking-hot blond intern’s “living expenses.” It was apparently ‘interesting’ enough for LaPierre’s wife’s company (Ackerman McQueen) to demand an explanation…but NRA member & would-be NRA members shouldn’t?

  5. Fact: This letter reassuring us that everything is above board with the NRA’s executive team is written and signed by the executive team.

    Fact: The NRA has not advanced the ball in the pro-war court. No-bumpstocks, no deregulation of silencers, no chipping away at NFA, nothing.

    Fact: Wayne’s reputation and public image is ruined. Has he even shot a gun before? We need a fresh, young and energetic face to the NRA.

    Fact: Wayne is overpaid

    Fact: Chris is overpaid

    Fact: GOA gets my money now

    • Wayne needs to step aside. Chris needs to stay on we need him.

      But to be fair , the price we paid for Wayne’s suits and salary was money well spent. He more than anybody helped us after sandy hook. He won that fight.

      Should the nra do better? Yes. But they are on our side. The antis lost the election. They are scared of the nra and are hitting them with everything they can. Even the GOP is scared because the nra went in for trump not Jeb or some other bankster shill.

  6. “We are not inclined to further discuss unfounded attacks on our organization, political infighting, or a “weakened” NRA.”

    Ok, and with that, “we” won’t be donating another penny to “you.” Holding closed door meetings to discuss these matters and then saying “we have discussed them, we won’t tell you what we said, end of discussion,” only ends your side of the discussion.

    Now it’s time for our wallets to continue speaking…

  7. This letter is tone deaf. It’s not outsiders and adversaries that are voicing concerns.

    Also, Enron was audited by, at the time, the most reputable accounting firm.

  8. Wow, what a surprise, the current officers responsible for the current mess and the past officers who created the current mess all stand united to tell us to shut up and send in more money. Who would have thought that could happen?

    All sarcasm aside, the one amazing thing in that pile of hogwash was the reference to OUR MISSION: “Our adversaries will not divide us and any further discussion about the so-called “demise of the NRA” is only meant to distract us from our mission.” along with the crap about the NRA as “the last line of defense against a campaign to take down the Second Amendment.” Sorry to interject a brief note of reality but the NRA was not formed to defend the right to keep and bear arms and the NRA is not and never has been a pro-2A or pro-RKBA organization. It was the NRA that brought us the National Firearms Act of 1934. It was the NRA that brought us the Federal Firearms Act of 1938. It was the NRA that brought us the Gun Control Act of 1968. It was the then-President of the NRA who testified before congress that carrying firearms ought to be rare, heavily restricted, and only under license. More recently it was the NRA that supported the Assault Weapons Ban of 1994, and the mis-named Firearms Owners Protection Act of 1986 including the infamous Hughes Amendment.

    Even more recently it was our beloved NRA that actively sought the Bump Stock Ban, including a personal meeting between Wayne LaPierre and President Trump to advise the president on how to bypass congress to illegally get the Bump Stock Ban without congressional action.

    And today we have the NRA supporting Red Flag Laws so long as they have any fig leaf pretending to be due process despite the fact that ALL Red Flag Laws are Ex Parte proceedings that deny gun owners they basic constitutional rights.

  9. Just today I received the invitation to join the NRA Golden Eagles for $250. NOT ANOTHER DIME until LaPierre and company are gone, along with Ackerman McQueen and anyone with ties to it. And no, I’m leaving nothing to the NRA in my will, despite their request.

    • Thank you, I forgot that one.
      I’ll schedule an appointment with the lawyer next week.
      I needed to redo it anyway, it’s been a few years since it was last looked at.

  10. How much more are our rights protected with LaPierre in a $3,000 suit vs a $500 suit? Does he need a raise so he can afford to clothe himself? I feel like these are valid questions.

      • Yea fuck that mother fucker, he fucked up, the nra fucked up give ur money to GOA instead. The NRA kissed the ATF’s ass with bumpstocks, suppressors and machine guns

      • The letter above refers to the NRA Members Meeting at the NRA Annual Meeting that was held on Saturday. As Joshua Prince and Rob Pincus pointed out in the comment section of Todd Rathner’s post, ALL Board Members in attendance voted in favor of adjourning the meeting after Board Member Hammer moved for adjournment. It was only the NRA Membership that voted against adjourning the meeting so that the issue could be heard. This letter above is an outright lie. The NRA leadership did not wanted an open discussion and tried to end it several time. See the full video here:

        What you refer to is the Board meeting on Monday, which was also shielded from the members by going into executive session.

  11. “Every member has an opportunity to voice any concern they may have at the Members Meeting.”????
    Is that why EVERYBODY at the meeting who brought these issues up was told to shut up because in public was no place to discuss such things, but only behind the closed doors of the boardroom?
    Allow me to translate this phrase from corprospeak into English: “Every member has an opportunity to raise their hand any mention any concern they may have at the Members Meeting. And the board retains the rights to run the meeting, not call on anyone they don’t like, and shut any such concerns up at any time with the phrase: “that must be discussed in private”.
    There. I think that’s accurate.

  12. FACT: I, personally, don’t care about Wayne’s salary or wardrobe. (Others may, and that is their right).
    FACT: AckMac’s billings are a big issue; perhaps one or more law firms’ billings are as well.
    FACT: A large swath of the membership has lost faith in the Board of Directors; it seems to be the captive of Wayne and entrenched officers and directors.
    FACT: That swath of skeptical members is too large to be ignored or put-off by self-serving statements.
    FACT: Too many gun owners have given up on the NRA and refuse to maintain their membership; that saps the credibility of NRA on Capital Hill.

    It’s time for the Board of Directors to take its responsibilities seriously. If they don’t do so then NY State will do the job for them.

  13. FACT: You, the signees of this letter, are idiots to think that anyone with a handful of healthy brain cells to rub together can’t see thru the nefarious background of this letter.

    FACT: The NRA leadership is dysfunctional.

    FACT: The degree of mismanagement in this not for profit organization is criminal, and not forthcoming to its membership.

    FACT: I have lived through an experience eerily similar to this one. And, along with hundreds of others, and our community at large, suffered the consequences.

    REALITY: If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, walks like……

    PERCEPTION: You lie. Like a bear rug.

    BEST HOPES: That the deserving administrators responsible for this boondoggle get jail time for fraud, larceny and embezzlement.

    /rant off/

    BTW- Are their ANY board members with enough ethics and gumption to blow this thing up and set things straight? Doing the right thing takes courage.
    Actions speak louder than words.

  14. Fact: You won’t get a dime from me if old Wayne stays on…acclamation huh? SAF and my state groups will get my meager assets.

  15. “A fiery horse with the speed of light, a cloud of dust, and a hearty “Hi-yo, Give us your Silver!”,
    – NRA public announcement

      • “In the words of Larry the Cable guy, “That’s funny I don’t care who you are”! ”

        Borrowing from the sign above the urinal at Planet Hollywood….

        “We aim to please. You aim too, please.”

  16. It’s my understanding that, instead of being paid directly by the NRA, past president Oliver North’s salary was paid for by the NRA’s PR firm and Wayne La Pierre’s personal expenses were routed through them. Even if nobody took unfair (and illegal) advantage of the situation, no properly managed organization would tolerate such irregularities. The NRA needs to clean its house.

    • I noticed Pete Brownells name was missing as well. Being a business man perhaps he disagrees with the WAIST FULL spending of the NRA?

  17. Since their fan base is losing faith in them, who knows maybe they get rid of wayne & put in Obutthead or one of the Clinton Klan to get a bigger audience of support. Since there only supporting their bank accounts!

    • Why bother clean house, they already fucked over gun owners. I wouldnt give them another chance, fuck the NRA go with GOA. I hope the nra crumbles for good, they comitted treason in my eyes, fuck the fudds too since they are inbred only believing in only shotguns and bolt actions.

  18. Fuck the NRA, they fucked over the people, kissed the ATFs ass to ban bumpstocks. Fuds fuckdd up too, i blame the NRA. Give your money to the GOA! I hope the NRA crumbles

  19. “Over the years, Wayne had been advised by the NRA’s advertising professionals to invest in his professional wardrobe due to his numerous public and media appearances.”

    Right. That still comes out to $18K a year in clothes. That doesn’t include all of the 1st Class plane tickets, 5-star hotel rooms, and $13K for an apartment for an “intern” (Is there a blue dress in her possession?)

    The authors of this letter have disgraced the NRA and fleeced the membership for years. Not one more penny until they’re gone.

  20. NRA Board, You’ve had a month to start making changes and clearly you don’t intend to so I’m out, simple as that. 2AF gets my money from now on. Sad sad day.


  22. One wonders why this piece of official communication by NRA Officers and Past Presidents was not posted on the NRA’s Facebook page. Oh, right, that Facebook page is reserved for fear mongering and propaganda to bring in the cash.

  23. Really? Think about your answer carefully then tell me: is that really your position?

    Because just today I got an email from Wayne Lapierre entitled “[SHUTDOWN NOTICE] Save NRA”

    Part of the email said

    “… without a bank account, NRA can’t continue to operate. We can’t write checks. We can’t accept membership dues or contributions. And we can’t pay our employees or even our electric bill.

    And let me be clear. Cuomo’s tactics are already working.

    One by one, more and more banks and insurance companies across the country are knuckling under to Cuomo’s threat – and telling NRA they won’t do business with us – because they don’t want to be targeted and crushed by Cuomo’s strong-arm tactics and the vast power of thousands of New York bureaucrats.

    And very soon, unless we can force Cuomo to break off this attack, NRA will have no choice but to cease operations after 147 years of fighting for freedom.”

    So on the one hand you’re telling your members in direct emails that they need to give until it hurts because you’re teetering on the edge of insolvency and might have to cease operations then on the other hand making claims like the letter in this article. This is fine, nothing to see here.

    Pick one. They can’t both be true and you’re really, really hurting your credibility with your members and the general public. You’re getting your message mixed up when we’re going into another critical election season. Sure, you don’t want to tell Cuomo he’s succeeding. But you already have and there’s no hiding it. So be honest. Tell people what is really going on. If you’re on the ropes and want to stay in the fight then tell them how you’re going to win. Don’t tell them it’s a last-ditch defense before insolvency. That sounds like we’d be throwing money away. Tell us how you’re going to win, not just suck money from our wallets.

    • “Don’t tell them it’s a last-ditch defense before insolvency. ”

      You are just being mean. The NRA cannot simply re-incorporate in a friendly state because there is some US constitutional requirement that non-profits must be incorporated and headquartered in NY, specifically NYC. Unlike a for-profit corporation, NRA cannot just pack up and move to a friendly state. We all know the gun-friendly states are not sophisticated, don’t have thriving large cities with all sorts of clubs and power brokers, the latest fashions and exotic foods. NRA is just frozen in place, with no options. “We just have to do something” for NRA.

        • “Sam, I like the cut of your jib.”

          I just try to live by the motto of Chuckles the Clown from Minneapolis TV station WJM: “A little song, a little dance. A little seltzer down your pants.”

      • Honestly don’t know a lot about the NRA either way and that part did not get my attention. The issue of attacking a organizational opponent through the insurance and financial markets (and sadly yes NY sets the standards for both effectively) does warrant attention as it has a lot of destructive potential.

        • “…does warrant attention as it has a lot of destructive potential.”

          Yes it does. While too many are hunkered down, waiting to assassinate jack-booted thugs come to confiscate firearms, the real threat is via every other avenue of influence available to anti-gunners.

    • The threat from Cuomo and the “progressive” attempt to use NY’s status as the financial center of everything to lock the NRA out of doing any business at all is very real. It’s a threat not only to the NRA, but to *everyone* who enjoys things the “we aren’t fascists but we behave exactly like them” crowd doesn’t like.

      It’s also unrelated to the current brouhaha over Ackerman McQueen, bloated expenses, and cronyism.

      Both are existential threats to the organization. One is self-inflicted; the other is an external attack. The “stop the shutdown!” fundraising gambit isn’t helping with either one.

  24. That was embarrassing to read. Talk about stonewalling and non-responsiveness!
    How old is “Wayne”, anyways? 6 Y.O.? Does he need older adults to tell him that, “When we get paid over 1 million dollars per year, son, we have to wear nice clothes.”

    • “Does he need older adults to tell him that, “When we get paid over 1 million dollars per year, son, we have to wear nice clothes.” ”

      The truly wealthy can afford to wear what they damn well please, without thought to what others think; maturity and confidence. The rich worry constantly over what others think., and lose their joy.

  25. 1. Statements like the one signed by a selection of old guard NRA officers just makes me wonder what they are hiding.

    2. The most powerful input ordinary members like me have is to withhold funds and that’s what I’m doing until LaPierre and his cronies are gone.

    3. Mismanagement and self-enrichment have been going on for decades, it’s not something just cooked up by the gun grabbers.

    4. I think it’s a sign of an unhealthy organization when they act like they can’t survive without their one great leader. What is the NRA, a cult of personality? Don’t they have other people who can move up and bring in some fresh blood? Corporate CEOs resign all the time when investors lose confidence in them.

  26. I use to be a proud member of the NRA, not so much anymore. I will not rejoin until LaPierre is gone. When are people going to realize that Wayne is getting rich on the backs of NRA members, he does not care about you and I, not until we stop supporting his lavish lifestyle with our membership $$$.


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