Phillip Journey an Independent Running For 2020 NRA Board of Directors

Phillip Journey is running for the 2020 NRA Board of Directors, please consider him for your vote when returning your ballot.

Phillip Journey an Independent Running For 2020 NRA Board of Directors
Phillip Journey an Independent Running For 2020 NRA Board of Directors

USA – -( Tribalism in its positive aspect can lead to social bonding helping keep individuals committed to the group, even when personal relations may fray.

It can also lead to bullying when a member is unwilling to conform to the politics of the collective. Does that sound familiar to you? It has infected the body politic of our great nation at every level. It has become so ingrained in the political culture of the gun rights movement that it may be described as toxic. The hallmark of someone who is engrossed in toxic tribalism is that they unable to recognize the consequences of their conscious behavior.

Persons identified with both tribes in the NRA, the pro-Wayne and anti-Wayne factions have engaged in behavior that is beneath them and our great organization. For those who may not be aware, I am employed by the State of Kansas as a District Court Judge. I have been elected 3 times in a district of 485,000 residents. Presiding over dozens of jury trials. Judges are bound by ethics rules. One of the primary rules is not to show bias or favoritism. To express how I would rule prior to hearing the evidence, obviously would be a violation of that principle. That is precisely what both tribes in the NRA demand of me. They ask for guarantees of future decisions and possible votes.

I want to take this opportunity to promise the membership that I will work to gather facts and review the questions posed. I will vote to do what is warranted by the facts. To be sure, I am concerned about the future of the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. I was in Indianapolis at the NRA annual meeting. I have been attending Annual meetings since 1991. I have read dozens of press reports that contain allegations that can only be described as disturbing. Like many of you, I don’t trust the New York Times. I have read many of the court filings in the lawsuits between NRA and their vendors, former officers, and employees. I have reviewed copies of NRA IRS 990 filings for more than a decade. Before I went to law school I graduated with a degree in accounting.

I understand the concerns expressed to me by innumerable NRA members. What I have read in the media, what I saw and heard at Indy, and what I know about the gravity of the threats faced by the NRA and the 2nd Amendment compelled me to return to the fray. The right to keep and bear arms is my sole motivation for seeking election to the National Rifle Association’s Board of Directors. I have resisted assimilation into either faction. I am running to represent the membership of the NRA. I have listened to the membership at over a dozen gun shows and gun club meetings in Kansas and Oklahoma, speaking with hundreds if not thousands of members since Indy. I will continue to do so. We share the same concerns.

The demand that I express unqualified support for what the tribes define as “principles” or for or against and Wayne are imprudent at best. Such demands risk the very liberty we all cherish. After practicing law for over 30 years and over 5 years serving as a Kansas State Senator I came to the conclusion that Ross Perot was right about one thing, “the Devil is in the details.” A great concept can be horrible in its wording and execution. A wonderful idea is easily ruined by sloppy ambiguous drafting. It can be so poorly written that it becomes a violation of existing law or inconsistent with bylaws not changed in the proposal. The negative effects of unintended consequences that result from ill-conceived and poorly drafted proposals must be avoided.

I will pledge now to work with all members to move forward to form a more perfect Association. I will work to improve NRA from competitions to youth development and turn back the multitude of 2nd Amendment infringing legislative proposals across our Nation.

Kansas 4-H Rifle Instructors
Kansas 4-H Rifle Instructors

We must work to improve the public’s understanding of the 2nd Amendment. Every challenge must be answered with the truth. If we can move public opinion the politicians will follow. When our opponents lose public opinion they will lose elections. When we win elections the tide of legislation will turn. While this cannot be accomplished overnight I pledge to continue this struggle as I have since 1982 working in over 100 campaigns and 1,000 interviews in local, state and national media. While some can’t seem to find verification with their Google search of recent gun rights activity by me. Many of the things I do are not “newsworthy”.

Helping my fellow Hunter Education instructors at the largest clinic in the United States and teaching conservation to more than 6,000 young hunters over the last decade or being a 4H rifle and pistol instructor for nearly a decade is in my view, more important than appearing on The Daily Show.

I am proud of all our youth competitors and in Kansas, 4-H instructors turn out National Champions and the youngest person ever to shoot on the US Olympic team. We must redouble our efforts to bring youth into the shooting spots. If they enjoy the sport they will come to understand the issue. We must win the issue in every age group.

During the 5 years I served in the Kansas State Senate I authored 30 bills enacted into law. They ranged on topics from sex offenders to DUI. The legislation I am most recognized for in my State the enactment of Statewide firearms preemption voiding hundreds of anti-gun municipal ordinances and shall issue Right to Carry. In enacting RTC I had to engineer the 1st successful override of a Governor’s veto in over a dozen years.

Make no mistake; I did not do it alone.

A majority of the Democrats in each chamber of the Kansas legislature voted with gun owners to override Democrat Governor Sebelius’ veto. Thousands of Kansans contacted their legislators, wrote letters to the editor and spoke to their friends and neighbors about liberty and the benefit of possessing the means to defend themselves and their families. As recently as 12 years ago about a third of NRA endorsed candidates were Democrats. While I have always been a Republican I knew they were an important part of the coalition when was I President of the Kansas State Rifle Association and a separate gun rights PAC. We must work to lift up pro-gun rights Democrats to create an insurgency within their party. They will also keep Republicans honest.

Phillip Journey is running for the 2020 NRA Board of Directors.
Phillip Journey is running for the 2020 NRA Board of Directors.

I have tried to hit some of the high points, while incomplete; I have tried to express the most important points with the broadest concerns. I know the set of goals expressed here are going to be to some, pie in the sky and unreachable, and it may be so. Yet we must try. These are worthy goals and are attainable. I may be stepping into no man’s land on the NRA Board and be shot at by both tribes. I hope every voting member of NRA considers what has been said here and agrees with the proposition that having a board member that can be objective in addressing the profound questions facing the NRA and the 2nd Amendment is in the best interest of everyone concerned and they vote for me, Phil Journey, for the NRA Board of Directors.


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Dubi Loo

This is exactly why you did not get my vote.


Integrity: The quality of being honest, and having strong moral principles.
Integrity is how you behave when noone is watching you.

Wayne LaPierre and his BOD cronies are responsible for creating an organizational culture bereft of integrity, and permeated by greed, fraud, money laundering, and embezzlement.

“Non-Profit” my A$$. Indictments are inevitable.

Anthony Garcia


I’m glad you decided to actually campaign for your board seat, rather than assume you were going to get a spot.

However it’s obvious that you’re a fence sitter. Now is not the time for weak statements essentially amounting to a “let’s wait and see” attitude backed up only by a “holier than thou” mentality.

I’m glad we didn’t endorse you as you’re clearly waiting to see which way the wind blows. Be careful – that horse you’re sitting on is mighty tall and that wind just might blow you off.

Anthony Garcia
Save the Second President

Ron Carter

Phil, thank you for that. I’m glad to know that you and I share several concerns. While we don’t share all the same concerns and have very different priorities you and I have common ground. Youth education and public perception of the second amendment is incredibly important to me. I want to point out a couple of things that we disagree with in the hopes that you will reconsider your position and truly work to “make a more perfect association.” You mention “the pro-Wayne and anti-Wayne factions have engaged in behavior that is beneath them and our great organization.” I… Read more »

Ron Carter

Phil, you are wrong and you are right. 

You are right that my personal experience with the judicial system is limited to my friends who practice. I am not barred and have zero aspirations to become any more familiar than I already am. Now, I do understand that I need to have a firm grasp of Robert’s Rules and procedure as that is the foundation for debate during the members meeting. Still, that has no relevance to the issues I raised. You can either work for the members or not. Lecturing is not listening. Attacking my experience isn’t answering the… Read more »

Ron Carter

There is a common saying in my community, “run your gun not your mouth.” In my comment over a year ago I said that I would be happy to say that I was wrong about you. So far, it took you over 12 months to step up to the plate and now you’re talking a good game? Granted, I am happy that at least now we have directors doing something other than worshiping their king, and directors legitimately concerned for the survival of the NRA. Guess who opposed concerned members at the Members’ Meeting 2019? You did. Now you want… Read more »


Compromise is failure! Another politician avoiding the real issue and wanting to “join the club”. You can’t fix something as broken as the NRA; patches and duct tape won’t do it. The ONLY chance for NRA to ever recover is if LaPierre and ALL his toadies and sycophants are eliminated, and purged from the NRA permanently. Until then, all efforts are a waste of time, effort and money. Contribute and support your local/state organizations first and foremost, and ONLY then if you can afford it, send $ to a national organization, as long as it isn’t LaPierre’s NRA.


I have already voted in the BoD election. I voted for only a few of the candidates that I am familiar either personally or by reputation. I have known Phil about 40+ years. WE each had written letters to the Wichita Eagle newspaper . The paper had the policy of requiring real names and such to print any letter. That may have been intended by the paper’s editors to discourage letters. But it did allow a few pf us to get together and become more effective. Phil and I would attend local gun shows for political reasons. There might be… Read more »

Ron Carter

I have zero doubts that Phil has done and continues to do great things as a senator, judge, and second amendment advocate. I have every doubt that he will address and correct the glaring problems and horrible predicament that the NRA is in.


My wife read my comment and suggested I clarify some comments of mine. Animal cruelty law was changed to increase penalties to felonies for cruelty, such as setting a live cat on fire or other malicious acts. But hunting and farming were excluded, something which was suggested by certain liberal groups. The carry law was the first in Kansas. The original law was far from perfect but it set the ground work for all the Kansas laws such as Class III and finally Constitutional Carry and knife law reform. To those who cited GOA, why not join and donate to… Read more »

Rob Pincus

You stated last week that you had gotten “permission” to publish this article at Ammoland. Who did you receive that “permission” from?

Also, everything Ron Carter pointed out in his response here in the comments is important for you (and voters) to process. The NRA Doesn’t need another fence sitter. The NRA needs Reform.

#savethesecond #changetheNRA.

Rob Pincus

I will say that I applaud your ability to break through Culture War lines and work with pro-gun Democrats. When I was the key note speaker at the Kansas State Rifle Association annual dinner a few years ago, one of the other speakers was a serving State Level Democratic Legislator.


@wjd – Is TSRA a member of NRA national organization? Perhaps passing cash up the chain is mandated? If so – most strongly agree that TSRA needs to be replaced or reorganized. Perhaps simple education of TSRA management would be sufficient? I imagine that they believed NRA to be fighting for our rights at the national level. Won’t do much good to have CC in TX if handguns are illegal at the federal level! Well unless TX secedes which I consider to be a suboptimal solution. Remember the 2019-AWB, which proposed to ban all semiauto firearms, though couched in less… Read more »

Ed in North Texas

You know, or should know, that nothing goes to the floor of the House for a vote if the Speaker opposes the bill. When we add the fact that all Representatives get to vote for the Speaker, we have a situation where, to one degree or another, the Speaker usually owes the Democrats for his election, as Bonnen and Straus both did (particularly Straus). Yes, the votes were there for Constitutional Carry, all but one – Bonnen’s. And without the one vote there was no way the bill would get to the floor for a vote. We know that Bonnen… Read more »

Dave in Fairfax

Rob, When I read Mr Journey’s previous article and saw the comments to it, I suggested to him that he address those comments. This is his article clarifying his positions. I don’t think that “permission” is meant the way it sounds.