Frank is the only person on the ballot who has consistently called for and worked toward, full accountability on the part of the executives, staff, and Board. He introduced a resolution at the 2019 Members’ Meeting, calling for a vote of “No Confidence” in Wayne La’Pierre and his enablers on the Board, and he has introduced a similar resolution at each Members’ Meeting since.
While there are a few other candidates on the ballot that I like and think might do the right thing, given the right circumstances, Frank Tait is the only one that I’m sure will take a leading role in working for reform.
Bullet Vote Frank Tait
By casting a ballot with only Frank Tait’s name marked, it leverages that vote, improving the odds of Frank’s election, and reducing the chances that any votes I might cast for other candidates might help push Frank down in the overall rankings, costing him a seat.
Realistically, all but 2 of the candidates on the ballot this year will get seats. There are 30 candidates for 25 seats, but two additional seats have opened up recently, with the passing of long-time Director John Cushman of New York, and the resignation of Todd Rathner. Both of those seats will be filled from this slate of candidates, based on vote totals. Then at the Members’ Meeting in Houston in May, there will be an election for the 76th Director, from among the three candidates remaining.
The 25 regular seats being filled, are for 3-year terms. Cushman’s seat has, I believe, 2 years remaining on it, and Rathner’s seat comes back up next year. The 76th Director seat is a 1-year term, so it too will be up again next year.
Of course, all of this assumes that there will still be an NRA to have Board of Director elections after this year, which is not guaranteed by any means. New York Attorney General Letitia James has put together a very strong case against Wayne LaPierre and the Board that keeps reelecting him. She is pushing for the total dissolution of the Association, and that outcome is a real possibility. The case will be heard in a New York court, with a New York judge, because NRA was originally incorporated in New York, and despite some Directors over the years, pushing for the Association to move its charter to a more gun-friendly state, that has never been done.
The trial has been delayed, but is expected to take place toward the end of this year.
Some members of the Board of Directors have publicly declared that there’s “nothing to” the AG’s claims. They say this is just a politically-motivated hatchet job, by a gun-hating, NRA-hating political extremist, and that the NRA is going to skate through the trial with no trouble at all.
That’s a flat-out lie.
While it’s true that AG James is an NRA-hating, political extremist, and it is her hatred of guns and the NRA that motivated this suit, it’s also true that there have been serious problems at the top of the NRA.
Wayne LaPierre and his closest allies and advisors have been engaging in very shady and self-serving business practices, lining their own pockets at the expense of the NRA, its members, and its associated organizations, particularly the NRA Foundation.
Wayne LaPierre has admitted under oath, to at least a half-dozen actions that should have cost him his job, yet not only has the Board renewed his contract over and over again, in spite of full knowledge of these transgressions, the Executive Compensation Committee (comprised of the President and the two Board vice presidents) has increased his base salary and compensation package, and given him bonuses of $300,000 to $500,000 each year, for the past several years. And they’ve done this while major NRA programs have folded, NRA revenue has collapsed, and the majority of NRA staff has been laid off, while the remaining staff has had their pay cut drastically.
Anyone who tells you that there’s nothing to the allegations is either woefully misinformed and extremely gullible, or they’re intentionally lying to you. Those are the only two possibilities.
There are a much higher number of new candidates on the ballot this year. Typically there are at least 23 or 24 incumbents running for the 25 seats, but so many Directors have resigned, declined to run again, or were not renominated by the Nominating Committee, that this year, only 19 of the 30 candidates appear to be incumbents, and several of those are people who initially failed to be elected, but were later appointed to a seat as other Directors resigned from the Board. In fact, of the 25 Directors who were elected to 3-year seats in 2019, with terms expiring in 2022, only 15 are on the ballot this year, while 10 of 25 either resigned or were not renominated.
It’s unlikely that Frank Tait will be able to affect real change on the Board, but better to have him there fighting on the inside, along with Judge Phil Journey, the only current member of the Board willing to publicly criticize LaPierre and the current regime.
There is supposed to be a Members’ Meeting in Houston on May 28, 2022, so we’re gearing up to get as many angry and frustrated members there as possible, to try and wake the majority of this Board from their current comatose state. I hope to see you there – if they don’t figure out a way to cancel and reschedule it again, as they did in ‘20 and ‘21.
Until then, please vote for Frank Tait, and urge your friends to do likewise.
And whatever you do, don’t give any votes to the LaPierre loyalists who keep defending him, especially past Presidents and current officers like Willes Lee, Marion Hammer, Ron Schmeits, Sandy Froman, and Jim Porter. They’re all almost certainly going to win seats, but having them come out low in the polling might send a message.
About Jeff Knox:
Jeff Knox is a second-generation political activist and director of The Firearms Coalition. His father Neal Knox led many of the early gun rights battles for your right to keep and bear arms. Read Neal Knox – The Gun Rights War.
The Firearms Coalition is a loose-knit coalition of individual Second Amendment activists, clubs and civil rights organizations. Founded by Neal Knox in 1984, the organization provides support to grassroots activists in the form of education, analysis of current issues, and with a historical perspective of the gun rights movement. The Firearms Coalition has offices in Buckeye, Arizona and Manassas, VA. Visit: www.FirearmsCoalition.