BREAKING: NRA Sues Ackerman McQueen…Again

Wayne LaPierre

Dan Z for TTAG

Last month, the National Rifle Association sued its longtime PR and marketing firm, Ackerman McQueen for failure to produce detail supporting millions of dollars in billing to the gun rights org. That precipitated a very public fight that resulted in the disclosure of travel, clothing and other spending by NRA EVP and CEO Wayne LaPierre.

Now the NRA has filed a second lawsuit against Ack Mac.

The National Rifle Association filed a lawsuit accusing its longtime advertising firm of orchestrating a failed executive coup at the gun-rights group and leaking details about lavish expenses, as part of an alleged attempt to “tarnish and ultimately destroy the public image of the NRA and its senior leadership.”

The lawsuit against Ackerman McQueen Inc., filed Wednesday in a local court in Alexandria, Va., is the latest salvo in a battle between the NRA and the ad firm.

In a meeting that took place before the NRAAM in Indianapolis, then-NRA President Oliver North and other board members and contributors asked for LaPierre’s resignation. In response, LaPierre fired off an angry letter refusing to step down and accusing North and Ackerman of using extortion techniques against him.

As the Wall Street Journal reports (paywall), in this latest suit  . . .

The NRA also claimed that Ackerman McQueen after the annual meeting began to deliver on its “extortion threats” and “cynically leaked selected portions of confidential business records.”

The NRA is seeking $40 million in damages.

 

comments

  1. avatar John Boch says:

    The truth is an absolute defense.

    As much as I’d like to see AckMack lose this case, I think the real losers are NRA members under Wayne LaPierre and his swamp creature buddies.

    I will say that Chris Cox at ILA is not part of LaPierre’s little fiefdom.

    By the way, has anyone talked to little Miss Delta Zeta about why NRA put her up in a $4500/month apartment yet while she was a summer intern?

    1. avatar Freebird says:

      A new lawsuit is just the ticket to distract from payments for ” Intern ” expenses ….. just sayin’.

      ( The whole clown show is sounding like —– ” Mom …. he started it !! ” )

    2. avatar WI Patriot says:

      Perhaps she has a blue dress…

    3. avatar frank speak says:

      what a mess!….

    4. avatar Dan in Detroit says:

      I’m actually not questioning the price so much… $4500 for a month is $150/night, which is just under the allowable rate when you look at GSA standards for the DC area. I feel like of all the things to pick at, some intern that looks good on camera probably isn’t really all that big of a deal. I do find it a little strange that they gave her, an intern, an apartment to stay in, but i’m not seeing it as evidence of any wrongdoing – just questionable uses of member money.

      1. avatar strych9 says:

        In regular times I would agree that the treatment of such an intern is questionable.

        However, it’s also true that many of the remaining internships out there come with what might be considered by many to be “lavish” perks and pay because of a change in the law under Obama.

        Most people overlooked the fact that the Obama administration made “unpaid internships” illegal. The exact methodology of how they did this isn’t something I can recall right off the top of my head but the practical application from ’10 (or so) onward was this: After all reasonably expected expenses (living, commuting, food etc for example) the internee must come out ahead financially, or break even, due to the way the law is written.

        The result was that most companies simply canceled their internship programs. Those that kept them are generally big money companies that spend heavily on lobbying efforts and generally use the programs to groom people for lobbying positions while still paying them under what a junior lobbyist gets paid. Those internships became very, very competitive because there are very few of them. They’re basically a job where the internee breaks even or makes a few bucks but all internship related expenses are covered for them.

        The companies view it as cheaper than hiring a group and then firing a bunch of them (it probably is cheaper), only keeping the good ones. The internees view it as a stepping stone to a great job regardless of if they are kept on forever and these days, it’s fairly risk free because you don’t end up in debt for doing the internship. The downside is that 95%+ of the people who would have gotten an internship under the previous law no longer can.

        Bright college kids with a talent for something don’t intern at P&G or a law firm or a major news company much any more because those internships are gone. If they intern they do it for a lobbying firm or the lobbying arm of a major corporation. These are some of the few internships remaining because personal knowledge of individual people is important in lobbying and something that cannot be “taught” but only learned by actually meeting the people.

        If she was in the D.C. area, well, that’s expensive and the NRA is legally obligated to cover all her expenses that would rationally be foreseen. As such, she’s gonna get a “cushy” situation by the standards of most Americans because that’s the law and the location and vocation are pricey.

        1. avatar barnbwt says:

          So competitive, that like Hollywood, only Instagram hoes can get in, you mean?

          BTW, it was 13,000$ total on “living expenses”

          Also, I’ve said it once I’ll say it again; the NRa has been in DC for 100 years –why are they paying rent to anyone?

        2. avatar strych9 says:

          $13,000 on living expenses is nothing in DC.

          Shit, a crappy apartment in Denver is $24,000/year.

          They’re legally obligated to make sure the intern breaks even or comes out ahead which means they have to cover living expenses. If it’s cheaper for the NRA to effectively “buy” an apartment and put an intern there then that’s what they’re going to do if that means they don’t have to worry about the intern being forced by current housing circumstances to pick a more expensive apartment.

          I have no idea what the chick’s vitea or creds are but if she’s a quality prospect then her looks don’t matter.

          Are you suggesting that we should discriminate against competent people who happen to also be attractive?

      2. avatar Reason says:

        I guess the question would be is it common practice for them to rent apartments for all the interns? Or just the good looking ones?

        And why have your PR agency pay it? If you are not trying to cover it up?

        1. avatar barnbwt says:

          And is it common for a husband to hire a hot intern that the wife doesn’t know about? LOL

        2. avatar strych9 says:

          “I guess the question would be is it common practice for them to rent apartments for all the interns?”

          I have no idea. It may well be their common practice depending on the housing situation in the DC area (about which I know nearly nothing). It’s exactly how a lot of the oil-field services companies around here keep their per diem expenses down.

          The company negotiates with an apartment complex to rent a bunch of units and put the guys in them “for free” because it means they don’t get requests for retarded amounts of money for per diem expenses. They call it a “perk” when they talk to employees about it but really it’s a cost reducing way of housing all the people a company like Halliburton is using around here.

    5. avatar Ned says:

      John I have followed your writing and involvment for a long time. I don’t always agree but I believe you to be a true 2A guy. Please help me understand why you are right in your opinion about the NRA and what is happening now. There is so much b.s. flying around, how do we who are looking for the truth find the facts.

  2. avatar Charlie Foxtrot says:

    Nothing to see here. Move on. Our finances are OK. Keep donating. LOL.

    Well, at least now we know how the NRA leadership thinks it can fix its finances.

    1. avatar Thixotropic says:

      How do you genius NRA haters know that what La Pierre and the NRA board say is NOT true?

      1. avatar NRAssholes says:

        Seriously dude. Put away your bag of Cheetos and orange-stained dick and go upstairs. Your mom has dinner ready.

        1. avatar Ack thbtbttbbt says:

          Go away

        2. avatar The Cheeto Bandito says:

          “Seriously dude. Put away your bag of Cheetos and orange-stained dick and go upstairs.”

          You’re not a nice person, Hombre…

        3. avatar RA-15 says:

          Grow up

        4. avatar Unrepentant Libertarian says:

          Your vulgar reply to Thixotropic gives no information as to why his post is false. Only a adversarial attack. Right now all I see is spinning on both sides. I will wait until all the facts are on the table before deciding who I will support.
          As for NRAssholes, I consider you a scatophage who needs to be drug tested to see what chemicals are influencing your thought processes.

      2. avatar Charlie Foxtrot says:

        I am an NRA Endowment Life Member. Does that make me an NRA hater now?

        1. avatar Fudds McKenzie says:

          They don’t want you to have mixed feelings or ambivalence about them. The kool-ade drinkers demand that you either love or hate them, thus place yourself in a world that is centered in them. If you refuse, they’ll just delude themselves.

        2. avatar frank speak says:

          it makes you an enabler…can’t continue on in this naive fashion….

      3. avatar Fudds McKenzie says:

        Matthew 7:16

        Also they contradict themselves.

      4. avatar frank speak says:

        we don’t hate the NRA…but we’re not going to tolerate this either…either these people have to go…or you risk bringing the whole thing crashing down…I refuse to fund this nonsense…

      5. avatar barnbwt says:

        Might have something to do with the decades of lies and (literal) billions of wasted dollars in donations; just a suspicion, though.

        1. avatar barnbwt says:

          And of course the fact that none of these expense reports about LaPierre have been denied. That, too.

  3. avatar former water walker says:

    Avoid all appearances of evil…😩

    1. avatar Fit2Btyed says:

      Somethings rotten in Denmark! You can’t extort someone who has done no wrong and has nothing to hide.

      1. avatar strych9 says:

        Of course you can. A lie spun into the right kind of gossip does the work of truth.

        16 year old girls do it to each other all the time. They just generally do it for attention rather than money but the principle is the same.

        This is exactly the kind of thing that gave rise to the phrase “Caesar’s wife must be above suspicion”.

        The wife of Pontifex Maximus was required by Roman custom to host the Bona Dea festival, a religious festival celebrating the goddess Bona Dea. This festival was open to women only because the Bona Dea was, in part, the goddess of chastity and fertility, so the rule was “no men”.

        When Julius Caesar became Pontifex Maximus his wife Pompeia was required to host this festival and did so. A man dressed in drag was able to gain entrance but was discovered and chased away. Eventually a guy named Clodius arrested and prosecuted for the whole thing. Supposedly he was there to seduce Pompeia. Not only did he fail to do this, even if he did sneak in he got caught and was forced to flee before he had the chance. And it was never even suggested the Pompeia knew he was present never mind would have given in to his seduction.

        Regardless of the facts a scandal ensues and, Caesar, for political reasons, divorced Pompeia saying that “my wife ought not even to be under suspicion”, effectively saying that he had no choice but to divorce her because the mere suggestion that she could have been seduced by a man under the circumstances alleged was such a stain on both Caesar’s and Pompeia’s public image that it couldn’t be tolerated (in reality this has significant religious AND political overtones).

        Caesar divorced Pompeia even though there was exactly 0 evidence against her simply because the fact that a question even came up looked bad for him politically.

        This whole thing eventually leads to the death of Cicero nearly 20 years later. The guy who was accused of trying to seduce Pompeia is Clodius. He claims he wasn’t in town at the time but Cicero contradicts this claim in court. Even though Clodius is eventually found not guilty he holds a grudge because this ends in his divorce as well as that of Caesar. Clodius, at the time, was seeking political office and married to a woman named Fulvia. This scandal damages Clodius politically and thereby damages Fulvia as well. Fulvia later marries a famous figure named Marc Anthony. It’s Marc Anthony who, presumably on the wishes of his wife Fulvia, refuses to listen to arguments against killing Cicero presented by Octavian, and sends hitmen after Cicero.

        When Cicero’s head is brought to Anthony numerous sources report that Fulvia seizes the severed head and stabs the tongue with hairpins in retribution for the words Cicero spoke against her former husband two decades previous.

        So, yeah, it ain’t gotta be true. It can cause some shit just to make unfounded allegations. In some cases charges of rape do this men in this country today. In the case of the original saying some unproven accusations were causing deaths 20 years later. Even got one of the greatest statesmen Rome ever had clipped over the whole thing.

        1. avatar barnbwt says:

          Or: Caesar wanted to trade in his wife, and he didn’t care for this upstart Clodius character. Win-win.

        2. avatar strych9 says:

          Caesar specifically refused to provide any evidence or ask for any punishment for Clodius and had no reason to want to get rid of Pompeia. She was gorgeous by all accounts and from a politically powerful family. Caesar lost on all counts.

          In fact, his next wife is a trade-down in age, looks and politics.

          It was in Caesar’s interest for this to just go away. It couldn’t go away because Cicero stuck to his morals and told the truth as best he knew it against all counsel to just stay out of things.

      2. avatar Jim Bullock says:

        We should bring back the distinction between blackmail*l and extortion:

        Blackmail: “Do what I want, or I’ll leak our furry coadlnvention reciepts to PETA.”

        Extortion: “Do what I want, or I’ll drop a photoshoped fake report of you being A W O L to the D A.”

        You can’t blackmail someone who’s done nothing wrong. You can extort the heck out of anybody, at any time, regardless of what they have done. Proposed “gun control” laws like “red flag” provisions — as written, not as advertised — look like machinery for extortion, to burden owning a gun when “the process is the punishment.”

  4. avatar Fit2Btyed says:

    Too bad that Charleston Heston is no longer around to answer some of these questions. What we need is another Moses to lead us into the 2nd Amendment promise land.

    1. avatar Fudds McKenzie says:

      Yup, just need someone to ride in on a white horse and clean up your mess. Perhaps praying to the god will help.

      1. avatar Ranger Rick says:

        Or we can rely upon an Fudd-Bag like yourself.

        1. avatar TrueBornSonofLiberty says:

          FUDDS are no friends of the Second Amendment. In fact, I hold them in contempt more than I do the filthy anti-gunners. I hope Father Time catches up with all these walnut furniture worshipping scumbags and crushes them as quickly as possible.

        2. avatar Fudds McKenzie says:

          @TBSoL – I know being The Original Party Fudd makes me persona non-grata. But guess what; you were never going to blame yourselves or your lobbyists for the NRA being trash anyway. You’re too entitled. So instead you blame me, blame Bloomberg, blame half the country, whatever. It’s your destiny to delude yourselves and be ineffectual and I’m happy to be a scapegoat to help you fulfill it. Which I would be even if my name were Elvis Wayne McFreedom.

          Am I sabotaging my plan by admitting it? Nope. You have no idea what to do with the information. You don’t have the mental equipment to process it. It’s like when a chipmunk runs in my garage, the keys might be there but it’s not going to steal the car.

        3. avatar Fudds McKenzie says:

          Sorry, I’m not available. First off I don’t want to help fix your organization. Not my problem. Second, short of actually advancing the RKBA cause, I’d still be a better scumbag lobbyist than what you have now. I’m not bragging, it’s just that the bar is set really low. I’d embarrass you less than Wayne and give more ballsy rhetoric, like Trump does, while hamstringing the cause. I know that would be a crowd pleaser. But I don’t want that job. It would be annoying and I’d be embarassed by it.

  5. avatar Sam I Am says:

    A lawsuit is a crap suit, but a win could just get NRA out of their financial dilemma, if one exists.

    Or it could be the undoing.

    Successful either way

  6. avatar Truckman says:

    I don,t know what is going on at the NRA but would almost guarantee that the DNC are behind it and as far as north his whole life is crazy and I don,t trust him as much as I trust obama to tell the truth about his true life The NRA needs new leadership that truly stands for the 2nd amendment and what the membership wants them to do

    1. avatar Fudds McKenzie says:

      You’re grasping at straws. Libruls, leftists, the DNC and Bloomberg didn’t do this. The NRA and its members did it to themselves. The members talked like tools, acted like tools and lo and behold got used like tools. There’s nothing you can do about it now but it would be more dignified if you admitted it.

      1. avatar John in Ohio says:

        As much as I hate to agree with a Fudd… I agree with this Fudd. 🙂

        1. avatar Fudds McKenzie says:

          😀

          Well, I am Fudds McKenzie, the Original Party Fudd!

    2. avatar frank speak says:

      wayne needs to go for the good of the organization….if he won’t then you know all you need to know…too many self-serving types at the top living huge on your dime…

  7. avatar NORDNEG says:

    Hate to say it but it looks like Bloomberg’s money is paying off, ,,, dissensions in the ranks is a tactical move, ,,, I’m not sanctioning either side, but , BE CAREFUL. 2-A. Is the #1 goal in this pissing match.

    1. avatar John in Ohio says:

      Neither Bloomberg or the NRA supported the 2A (you know, shall not be infringed?), so there’s no net loss if the NRA drops dead.

      1. avatar Ragnar says:

        No net loss?

        I would say that so long as the Democrats consider the NRA as enemy #1, we have something that keeps them on the defensive. If the NRA falls, they will feel empowered. Next, they will come after GOA, SAF, NSSF and all the other pro-2A organizations.

        1. avatar RA-15 says:

          RAGNAR speaks the truth. Btw , didn’t anyone get the explanation email from NRA this a.m. ?

      2. avatar Vlad Tepes says:

        If the NRA drops dead I guarantee in less than 24 hours you will lose every gun you own and probably owe the government money that they will bill you when they crush them and melt them down and make a profit on you and the scrap metal value. Any one that would make such a rash and foolish statement (you) has not an iota of historical knowledge on how many times the NRA saved all of you skin flints that were too cheap to join and used lame excuses as to why. Even if the NRA were a complete fraud (which is ridiculous) you would only have been out a few measly bucks. I guess in your permanent mental state that would have been a fate worse than death if you lost just a few dollars. A true Conservative, save a penny today so you can go bankrupt tomorrow.

    2. avatar frank speak says:

      all that happened was somebody turned over a rock…drain the swamp!….

  8. avatar Green Mtn. Boy says:

    Wayne La Pee and his fellow miscreants across the origination along with Ack Mac have to go now,Not One More Penny PERIOD.

  9. avatar TrueBornSonofLiberty says:

    In the meantime, has the NRA cut off ALL business ties with AM? That’s THE relative question. Anyone know?

    1. avatar barnbwt says:

      I believe the answer is only “sort of” which should outrage every member. Remember, half the BoD are on the AM payroll, and it’s LaPierre’s wife’s company; they aren’t really that separable, even amid litigation (which may also result in some anti-trust legal issues before this is all said & done). The ‘internal struggle’ isn’t so much between NRA leaders and the membership so much as between AM and the NRA. Frankly, it’s obvious at this point that they don’t really care about the membership’s sentiments at all –or LaPierre would have been immediately sacrificed– and just see you guys as a herd of cows to be milked for donation.

      And even more frankly, given some of the responses here defending these tools…it’s hard to blame them for taking you guys for granted.

  10. avatar Johnny Go Lightly says:

    Remember that the outward face of the NRA, other than LaPierre and Cox, IS ACK-MAC ! NRA tv, Cam Edwards, Dana Loesch, Colin Noir, Grant Stinchfield, etc etc etc. ARE ALL ACK-MAC EMPLOYEES. Other than Chris and Wayne the face of the NRA to the rest of America IS ACK-MAC. They created characters just like the WWE and Vince McMahon did. And we all bought it ! Get us a ballsy woman, a hip hop black guy, white guy with a beard, a lawyer, a reporter, and on and on.

    If ACK-MAC seperates from the NRA the the NRA will go dark for a real long time. Who knows what is in these personnel contracts? The NRA may even be barred from hiring these characters.

    1. avatar Fudds McKenzie says:

      Yup, assertive woman, young, fashionable, black lawyer, whatever Snitchfield is… middle-aged constipation-sufferer maybe.

    2. avatar Wiregrass says:

      Colion Noir was making gun rights videos prior to any known affiliation with the NRA or Ack Mac, so I think he is a somewhat authentic character. Loesch on the other hand came out of political media and signed up with the NRA after her previous gigs fell apart. She’s tends to use gun rights as a tool to shore up support for general conservative positions that may or may not be relevant to the Second Amendment. These Angry Dana videos, while they do gin up the emotions of the faithful, don’t really do much to advance gun rights from a reasoned perspective or to convince those sitting on the fence to support our position. I don’t think she is responsible for it but she personifies what has happened to the NRA.

      1. avatar barnbwt says:

        Yup, she was basically trying to turn her corner of the NRA into her own little NAGR-style ‘rights’ organization, that’s really just a front for “outrage porn” money raising (much like several talk-radio personalities or smarmy leftist comedians). When their focus isn’t solely on gun rights, it shouldn’t surprise us the real motivations of the people involved don’t concern our gun rights, either.

        More worrisome, is that mindset makes others think the NRA has turned into a GOP organ, and you start attracting stray dogs like that Russian gal, who come around sniffing for ‘influence’ targets of opportunity. Whether her advances were reciprocated isn’t nearly as concerning as the fact she thought she had an ‘in’ with GOP officials through the NRA.

        1. avatar Vlad Tepes says:

          There is a strong possibility she did indeed have an “in” with GOP officials and she was giving them more than a sniff of her perfume. When would a so called moral married GOP Conservative ever turn down a roll in the hay with a hot young chick they pretend to hate because she is a female foreign spy that they knew damn well was. As Albert Einstein once said “Monogamy is contrary to the Male Nature”. Perhaps that is why Christianity and its twin sister Islam are such depraved religions. Russia is well aware that female bait has worked since civilization began and has not quit working to this very day. Its like leading a dangerous bull around by the ring in his nose. She was only caught because she failed to seduce the bigger fish before they all got jealous of not getting their turn.

          Russia failed only because it was too cheap to send more than one female spy so the rest of the GOP would not have had to wait so long for their turn. Its amazing Trumps God Father Putin did not send at least two female agents to attend to Trumps needs, (the golden shower), perhaps Putin knew Trump was long past needing any females for the evening. Old age eventually takes its toll even on old whore dogs like Trump.

        2. avatar barnbwt says:

          Did they dust her for prints?

          BTW, just because someone takes exception to the NRA’s sleazy dealings, doesn’t mean they buy into every leftist fantasy regarding non-left figures. Your last paragraph is like the liberal version of the guy who goes on a rant about Zionist conspiracies when someone mentions something about Israel.

  11. avatar Andrew Lias says:

    Just wanted to say discovery in all these lawsuits is gonna be lit. Will be curious to see how this all pans out. Betting a settlement that keeps the status quo in all regards.

  12. avatar jbob says:

    Don’t care if La Pierre and his buddies are innocent or not. If they were on the up and up they’d do what’s best for the organization and move on. Unfortunately they’ll go on fighting the inevitable it until there’s nothing left to salvage.

    1. avatar frank speak says:

      5 mil a year?…274k clothing bill at a toney haberdashery?….5k suits?…and then there’s that little matter of that intern’s apartment rental…is anyone denying that this is true?…..

      1. avatar Dude says:

        No denying, just explaining why this is normal. You see, LaPierre really only makes like $1.4m. The rest of that $5m comes from required minimum distribution from his retirement account. See, he was required to take that much money. It’s not his fault. He has to bill someone else for his extravagant clothing because he’s a very important person, and you don’t won’t him to look like a bum. You can’t expect him to buy his own clothes like the rest of the world. He’s trying to save up enough to retire one day. $13,000 for 3 months rent in the D.C. area for the intern? Pfft. Have you seen what rent is going for around there?

        As for why LaPierre billed AM, who billed the NRA to pay for this stuff…well, actually I don’t think anyone has explained that part yet.

  13. avatar barnbwt says:

    How anyone’s response can be other than “OK, so fire them both” is beyond me. Well, not quite; what are the odds a huge marketing company under public scrutiny plays the same social media manipulation games as Shareblue/etc on the DNC side does?

  14. avatar User1 says:

    Sounds like Wayne wants a refund.

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