(LibertySociety.com) – New York Attorney General Letitia James has taken aim at another conservative personality, this time suing the National Rifle Association, particularly its longtime leader, Wayne LaPierre.
The office of the NYAG has been investigating the NRA and LaPierre for some time, amid accusations that LaPierre was mismanaging NRA funds and was also allegedly engaged in corrupt practices. The NRA, while still a major force in U.S. politics, particularly when it comes to fighting for Americans’ Second Amendment rights, has been beset with several problems over the years. Membership fell by almost 2 million over the last five years, with the group’s revenue sinking by 44% since 2016, with the group’s legal bills reaching into the tens of millions every year.
The NRA actually filed for bankruptcy in Texas almost three years back, in an attempt to move the organization to the state amid the NYAG investigation, which was already in place at the time. However, a Texas judge was unsympathetic to the group’s plight, saying that the bankruptcy filing was made to address a regulatory issue and not a financial problem.
The suit filed by James names LaPierre as a defendant, as well as the organization’s general counsel, John Frazer. The group’s former finance chief, Wilson Phillips, as well as former top official Joshua Powell are also named in the suit as defendants.
According to reports, Powell has been in settlement talks with the NYAG’s office, but no deal has been struck or announced yet. Powell is the odd-man-out of sorts among the defendants, in the sense that he has veered away from the organizations’ hardline policy of rejecting any and all gun regulation attempts by the government. In recent years, Powell has added his voice to those calling for universal background checks for gun buyers, and has said that he agrees that law enforcement has the right to seize legally owned firearms from people the government deems as dangerous.
Wayne announced on January 5 that he was resigning from his position with the NRA. He appeared in court for oral arguments on January 8.
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