NRA Convention Indianapolis
(AP Photo/Lisa Marie Pane)

Like virtually every big event that was scheduled in April and May, one prominent casualty of the coronavirus state of emergency and lockdown was the National Rifle Association’s annual meeting and convention that had been scheduled for Nashville from April 16-19. That lost revenue was a big hit to the gun rights org, at least partially contributing to salary freezes and layoffs.

Now, as the country slowly begins to reopen for business, the NRA may try to recoup some of that revenue. They’ve announced that the association’s annual meeting has been rescheduled for the fall.

Stephen Gutowski of the Washington Free Beacon reports that the annual meeting will take place in Springfield, Missouri on Saturday, September 5.

The NRA said the meeting where members provide feedback to the organization’s leadership would begin at 9 a.m. on the September 5. However, officials weren’t able to confirm whether or not there would be events taking place beyond that meeting. Traditionally, the members’ meeting is part of the NRA’s greater Annual Meeting, which includes a large exhibit floor featuring the gun industry’s latest offerings as well as speeches from politicians and the group’s leadership. The meeting has drawn up to 80,000 attendees in recent years.

The NRA has long used its Annual Meeting as a fundraising vehicle. While the group reported a rebound in donations and contributions in 2018, it has been forced to furlough and lay off staff amidst the coronavirus pandemic. A reduced convention may contribute to the financial struggles facing the group in the lead up to the 2020 election.

Should the NRA decide to stage a condensed version of its annual convention along with the meeting — something that isn’t yet clear — it would bring in only a fraction of the usual revenue.

The Springfield convention center has only about 5% of the floor space of Nashville’s facility. It wouldn’t accommodate anything close to NRA annual exhibit’s usual hundreds of exhibitors or accomodate 70 to 80,000 attendees. And Springfield is both a less compelling draw and much harder to get to via air than Music City.

The political advocacy side of the gun-rights group has also long presented the leadership forum during the Annual Meeting. That event features speeches from House members and senators who are supportive of the group’s mission and has long been one of the most influential gun-rights events in the country. Donald Trump has spoken at every forum since becoming president. This year, there are no announced plans to hold the forum or have the president speak to those gathered at the members’ meeting. 

No leadership forum would also negatively affect attendance. So if the NRA does elect to try to go ahead with some kind of smaller show along with its September 5 meeting, it would likely provide very little help to alleviate the org’s financial woes.

 

38 COMMENTS

  1. Why bother WLP will have his toadies lined up to vote him in once more as the head of Negotiating Rights Away.

    • Yea, he’s no longer helpful with the baggage he’s carrying. Can’t say if he’s effective or not, since I’m not privy to behind the scenes stuff, but in today’s environment, and what he’s done with members dollars, he needs to leave and will only keep others from supporting them at this pin to forward.

      • I agree WL needs to step down. As a life member I’ve donated about $100 this year, but I have a hard time being asked every week to save the NRA with anything I can spare when WL buys $250,000 in suites in one visit. NRA’s by laws need to be amended to establish the compensation limits. If EVERY DOLLAR is needed to fight NY’s Governor, then WL has been wasting funds. The BOARD is made up mostly of gun world celebrates, but maybe we need to elect activist. With 6 million members NRA can be a very powerful lobby even if they continue to work behind the scene. I cannot afford to make the trip, but those who go need to be vocal. I’m sure they will be told that decent would tarnish the NRA, but failure to make change will cause the decline and fall of the NRA. Bring back Chris Knox and Ollie North.

  2. Well that’s special…my NRA membership expired last month. I would have renewed but old Wayne remains. I’ll spend my fortune(😃) on ILL pro-gun groups, SAF & other’s.

    • I like the local/state news from GSL. The others have national news, (which is also good). I quit the NRA Freedom magazine. By the time print news comes, it’s old news.

  3. “The NRA said the meeting where members provide feedback to the organization’s leadership…”

    Now that’d be funny were it not so much bullshit. Under Wayne’s corrupt dictatorial control there is nothing more than the carefully crafted illusion of the NRA leadership listening to the membership. Any voice or motion before the board that challenges Wayne and his sycophants is quickly squashed. If necessary, by evicting the dissenting membership from the venue under some pretext.

    My position is NOT ONE CENT MORE UNTIL WAYNE & CRONIES ARE TOSSED OUT!!!

    • “The NRA said the meeting where members provide feedback to the organization’s leadership…”

      WLP and Negotiating Rights Away have proven they are unwilling to listen to members voices, the one thing that may garner their attention is the lack of funds.

      • Please take a lesson from 1968. In 1968 after Harlon Carter then Executive VP, answer the anti-gun media with hunting stories and how firearms are part of being american and american history and said nothing about the second amendment. I was in the 8th grade at the time, but his interviews on national news TV told me that he was way out of touch. I guess Neil Knox felt the same way and at teh 1968 convention there was a revolt. Harlon was out, don’t remember who replaced him, but Knox established the ILA as a separate entity to address gun rights. Now the NRA needs another shake up.

  4. Having been involved at the elected (ie not paid) leadership position of an organization that has many similarities, although with a very different in focus, I would say that there is probably a legal requirement to hold an annual meeting. Like the Executive Director of that organization, undoubtedly WLP consults an NRA paid attorney almost constantly.

    • Correct. The 1999 Annual Meeting was held in Denver, which was less than 2 weeks after Columbine. They canceled the displays, but they were legally required to have the member’s meeting portion. The antis protested and called them unfeeling and heartless, but the NRA did the least that they were legally obligated to perform.

  5. So , What’s the news here? Big time group, hasn’t written a hit in more than a decade, squandered their (our) money, can no longer fill a stadium because they pissed off their fan base, so they are now having to play old worn out tunes in “QUAINT OUT OF THE WAY” venues for a handful of die hard fans. Old story, heard it before.

  6. It’s not far from me. Nashville would have been better. I will go for the day. As a “new gun owner” I learned a great deal at my first NRA meeting. I let my NRA membership expired in April.
    I will be looking to see if the USCCA or another group, puts on an event in the same city. At the same time. That other group could be a much better alternative.

  7. Keep trying to change it from the inside, tool bags. You’d be worse off without it right? It’s true, if you say that, whether it was true or not to start, it becomes tru. Self fulfilling prophecy. So you’re that pitiful, that you can’t even speak for yourselves or buy lobbyists and media without help. You need to put up with an abusive relationship just to give your money away. Lol.

    Now get all suspicious with me, accuse me of being a paid troll. I’ll know it’s empty rhetoric because you’re the sweetest, most compliant, trusting little groupies for LaPierre and Trump. What you suspect or trust is unhinged from reality, you choose based on what fits your crumbling narrative and thus fits your crumbling, baseless sense of self-worth..

  8. Are you angry at the voice in your head and venting in a comment section? That is some dangerous self loathing you got going there.

  9. Want WLP gone? Apparently that ain’t happening because the NRA refuses to listen to the wishes of it’s members. If the annual meeting was on, the best message that could be sent would be a universal boycott of the NRA Meeting until WLP is gone. He would disappear within a week of nobody showing up. Hey, a guy can dream, right?

      • Neither will your gun rights. Listening to all you pearl clutching jerks carp on about the NRA is like idiots on the lifeboat comparing hairdos while being circled by sharks. Just remember who, after the horrible Newtown school shooting, was the only public figure with the stones to stand up and say and keep saying, “the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun” – That was your much despised Wayne LaPierre. Without the NRA, we would be as disarmed as Australia or the UK, not to mention without Trump we would be facing the argument of control by the UN under that ridiculous arms control scheme which would supplant our laws including the constitution 2A. The real enemy is the sharks, and they are constantly there, always circling, waiting. You ladies need to wake up.

  10. when the NRA dies the communist here will celibrate and rejoice. and we will loose the biggest gun rights group we have. they may not be perfect. but they still fight for our rights. and when they screw up on something you just voice your opinion at them, call them, email them, let them know . but don’t kill them. we need more gun rights groups, not less.

    • “don’t kill them. we need more gun rights groups, not less.”
      When you’re in a caravan of vehicles traveling down the road and the lead truck breaks an axle, you push the pile of crap into the ditch, off load anything useful and keep on moving.

      • Nice analogy, sounds like from someone who has experience being a refugee in their lifetime, not. The NRA’s axle has hardly broken, and you sound like a troll.

  11. So, they’re going to present the results of an independent audit at the meeting to prove that they aren’t corrupt, and self-serving, are good stewards of our donations, and don’t steer money to their families and cronies, right? Right?

  12. Springfield??? I grew up there; my hometown. Don’t understand why they would bother having it there. Out of the top 50 places to hold an NRA Convention, this would be 51 on the list. After Colt, Winchester, Springfield and Sig set up their booths, would there be room for anyone else. A fairly close drive from where I live now, but wouldn’t bother going. Just go to your local gun store and see a bigger variety than what they’ll have room to display. Or go to the Springfield Bass Pro Shop anytime and see more.

  13. Ah good another meeting to determine what they will allow us to have or not. The Kings men at the table of choices, squanderings and negotiating.
    I quit them few years ago and still to this day I get “it’s your last chance” mail. Take the hint there will never be a return after this last go round and the 90s sellouts.

  14. The Board election was on-going. The ballots were due back March 31. Then, about 10 days before that, they cancelling the Nashville Annual Meeting and made a vague announcement that the President would work with the Secretary about the election. So, will there be a new ballot? Or will they just count the old ballots, even though they cancelled it before it was finished?
    If so, it’s an admission that the elections are a farce. The Nominating Committee picks almost all the candidates.

  15. I have to say, almost all of the comments to this article sound like they were made by anti-gun trolls who would like nothing more than to cripple the NRA. F you to all of you.

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