National Rifle Association is broken bankrupt, and on borrowed time

National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre and the rest of the NRA leadership are on borrowed time after a year of lawsuits, investigations, and personal embarrassments stemming from allegations of gross mismanagement of the organization.

During the George Floyd protests in St. Louis, Missouri, when Patricia and Mark McCloskey (pictured above) pointed firearms at unarmed citizens walking past their house, the incident gained national news coverage and sparked controversy and 2020 saw a surge in gin violence crimes across the nation.

While the power and influence they have built will take years to dissipate fully, the bottom line is clear: the past year has been a disaster for the NRA, and LaPierre in particular. 

NRA leaders were forced to reveal in bankruptcy proceedings the depths of their mismanagement and incompetence, spent millions just to lose control of both the White House and Congress, and found themselves at odds with the public at every turn as they pushed an extremist agenda.

In the courtroom, it would be difficult for the NRA to find itself on worse footing. It is facing litigation not only from former vendors but also the New York and District of Columbia attorneys general for the extravagant spending that has come to define CEO Wayne LaPierre’s tenure.

In the face of these threats, the NRA made what might be its most desperate move yet: a Hail Mary bankruptcy filing in Texas in search of a proverbial get-out-of-jail-free card. 

It didn’t work. In its Chapter 11 filing, the NRA spent millions on legal fees only to get 

  • Testimony in open court about rampant mismanagement.
  • Evidence of luxurious personal spending by LaPierre including his private jet travel paid for by the NRA and family trips on a yacht paid for by a stakeholder of a key NRA vendor.
  • The board president admitting to shredding and burning documents after being “told they could be subpoenaed and used.” 
  • A CFO pleading the Fifth Amendment.
  • Ultimately a dismissal, with the judge finding the bankruptcy was not filed in good faith and that LaPierre’s efforts to hide the bankruptcy from the board were “shocking.” 

Put plainly, the NRA couldn’t even file bankruptcy correctly. 

NRA leaders also helped cement the organization’s reputation for pushing an extremist agenda.

Last year, as COVID-19 spread across the country, the NRA leadership used the moment to focus on their real priority: pushing a guns everywhere, for anyone, agenda. 

With the NRA Annual Meeting of Members scheduled for October 2021 in Charlotte, North Carolina, this report lays out the details of the reality the NRA doesn’t want to talk about with its members.

From the NRA’s travels through the court system to answer for its various misdeeds, to the lurid details of mismanagement and incompetence coming out of those court cases, to a diminished balance sheet, to the various forms of extremism it has embraced, to its waning influence in American politics, the past year at the NRA is one Wayne LaPierre and NRA leaders would like you to forget. 

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