Why is Wayne LaPierre Still Controlling the NRA? LTC West as Replacement?

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Tombstone, AZ- -(Ammoland.com)- On May 2, 2022, the New York Attorney General’s Office filed its Second Amended Complaint against the National Rifle Association.

Not only the Association but its Chief Executive Officer Wayne LaPierre, Secretary, and General Counsel John Frazer, Former Treasurer and CFO Wilson “Woody” Philips, and Former Deputy CEO Josh Powell.

As with the original complaint and the previous amended complaint, this one is full of very specific, largely verifiable, and utterly damning charges against NRA’s top officers and executives. Many of the previous accusations have been admitted to by some of the various parties, while Woody Phillips has refused to answer most questions, based on his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

It needs to be understood that LaPierre and the others are not named in the suit based on their positions within the NRA, as when someone sues a state and names the Attorney General or the governor as a representative of the state. The four named defendants were named for specific actions each is accused of, and the NRA itself is named for failing to stop them. With that in mind, legal experts said early on that the NRA’s best defense against the suit would be to adopt the following policies:

  • Remove the named defendants from any position of power within the Association – particularly any position that would allow any of them to have any oversight or influence over the Association’s legal strategy in battling the suit.
  • Initiate a thorough internal investigation by a Board-appointed committee with the power to get answers to its questions.
  • Adopt a policy of full cooperation and transparency working with state regulators.
    Institute strict policy and oversight rules to correct and avoid future problems, that would be backed up by consequential enforcement.
  • Plead victim status to the court, declaring that, if the named defendants (or others) abused their positions, then the NRA was the victim, not the perpetrator, and therefore should not be penalized.

A genuine response to the allegations would go a long way toward blunting the very real political motivations involved in the suit. New York Attorney General Letitia James is a highly motivated political actor, and she has not been shy about expressing her animosity toward the NRA, its mission, and its members. The Association should deal cautiously with her office, and request that the judge make sure that this personal and political bias doesn’t taint the case or cause undue injury to the Association.

This animosity on the part of AG James has actually been one of the strongest arguments from defenders and apologists of Wayne LaPierre. They point to James’s hatred of the NRA, and her political ambitions, and conclude that the whole case is just trumped-up lies and political theater.

The problem with that assertion is that LaPierre himself has admitted under oath that most of the charges against him are true.

He admits to billing the NRA for personal travel for himself and his family. He admits to improperly accepting gifts from major vendors, and awarding those same vendors multi-million-dollar contracts with no competitive bidding. He admits to giving multi-million-dollar severance packages to retiring and even fired employees, usually in exchange for them signing a strict nondisclosure agreement about NRA activities.

And he admits to giving contracts to family members and former staffers, often with little or no performance requirement attached. He also admits to doing all of this without clearing it, or even reporting it, through or to, the NRA Board, as required by state law and NRA policy.

His main defense in all of this, is to claim that either, it wasn’t improper, he didn’t know it was improper, and/or he didn’t know what other people were doing. Not a very impressive defense from a CEO who’s being paid in excess of $1.6 million per year.

One is reminded of Bart Simpson’s all-purpose defense: “Nobody saw me! I wasn’t there! You can’t prove a thing!”

So the big question is: Why is Wayne LaPierre still controlling the NRA?

Why would any organization facing existential threats – most of those threats based on accusations of misconduct and dereliction on the part of its chief executive – allow that executive to continue to hold inordinate sway over the organization? And why would any organization facing this kind of turmoil in its executive offices allow that same executive to retain control over the legal strategy of the organization in addressing the charges?

An equally perplexing question, is why the Board has so far not even attempted to rein in its rogue executives?

As noted above, NY AG Letitia James hates the NRA and all it stands for, and she wants to see it destroyed. The judge in the case has already taken dissolution of the Association off the table as a potential punishment, should the AG win her case. Her latest Amended Complaint focuses less on the NRA as a target, and more on the officers and directors – as it should – with the complaint calling for severe financial penalties and restitution payments from the Association’s wayward “leaders.” The complaint calls for the removal of LaPierre and his followers, but only as part of the penalty phase of the trial. That isn’t going to happen until sometime next year.

Meanwhile, LaPierre and company remain in control of the Associations resources, and most importantly, in control of its legal strategy – which amounts to shoveling millions of dollars into the pockets of New York lawyer William Brewer, who was originally hired by LaPierre to head off a threatened lawsuit from the NY AG back in 2018. Obviously Brewer failed in that mission, but he’s been very successful at extracting cash from the Association.

Brewer has reportedly been drawing over $2 million per month, averaging around $30 million per year, for the past 3 years. At the same time, NRA membership numbers have been in a nosedive, fundraising has collapsed, and the Association has cut practically all of its core programs to the bone.

If LaPierre and his enablers were to be removed from power now, the Association might do what they should have done from the beginning: Claim victim status and reorganize, without the crippling payments to the Brewer law firm. With that, they should be able to start recovering membership and see improvements in their fundraising, not to mention begin to recover the trust of its members. But that would not be seen as a good thing by Letitia James. Those steep legal bills, along with the potential of a court-mandated lawsuit against the NRA from the NRA Foundation, if things go as expected in a lawsuit filed by the AG of Washington DC, could totally bankrupt the NRA, and that would be a big win for Letitia James.

I’m not an attorney, but I’ve spoken with knowledgeable attorneys, and they keep coming back to the need for the NRA to distance itself from the accused “leaders,” even if only with temporary furloughs or compartmentalizing them away from certain aspects of the Association, particularly the legal strategy. They have also suggested that the NY AG could – and should – force this action by filing a request for partial summary judgment based on the admissions already submitted by LaPierre and some of his supporters. LaPierre has admitted to a variety of offenses, any one of which would fully justify his removal from office. Other NRA “leaders” have also admitted to various transgressions and failures in their fiduciary duties. With those admissions, it should not be difficult to convince the judge to remove LaPierre and the offending officers on the basis that they are using the NRA’s resources to protect LaPierre and themselves, rather than fulfilling their fiduciary responsibilities to the NRA and its members.

Wayne LaPierre, along with NRA President Charles Cotton, 1st VP Willes Lee, and 2nd VP David Coy, should be the subjects of a motion pointing out that they have all admitted to actions that should disqualify them from participating in the management of the Association, and especially anything to do with setting legal strategy.

If protecting the assets and interests of the Association’s members is of any concern at all to the attorneys in the NY AG’s Office – as the law states are their primary obligation – then they would have such a motion filed within days.

While we would hope that such a motion would be filed and addressed by the court prior to the Members’ Meeting in Houston on May 28, 2022, that seems unlikely, so NRA members must press the attack from different directions. The primary tactic must be to pressure NRA Directors to do what they should have done at least three years ago: Remove Wayne LaPierre. The best opportunity for the Board to take this action will be at the Board meeting on Monday following the Members’ Meeting. At that time, it will only take a simple majority of Directors to elect new leadership.

New NRA Leadership ~ LTC Allen West?

A group of concerned NRA members, including former and current members of the Board of Directors, want to draft former Director, LTC Allen West to run for the Executive Vice President position at the meeting in Houston. West has the support of many and could work with reformers to clean up the NRA and get it back on the right track, and he has a record of integrity and effectiveness.

Along with electing LTC West to the position of Executive Vice President, the Board needs to elect a slate of officers to back West in his reform efforts, and to lead the NRA’s legal strategy going forward. All of this makes it absolutely critical that every NRA Director attend the meetings in Houston, and be prepared to stand up for the membership. It’s equally critical that NRA members attend the Members’ Meeting on Saturday the 28th, 2022, to call out the lies and corruption, and to put some starch into the backs of the Directors. We also have a campaign underway to recruit, nominate, and elect a slate of reform candidates for the Board of Directors in the 2023 election.

Much more information about all of this is posted on our website, www.FirearmsCoalition.org, with both the first and second Amended Complaints, along with the Responses to the first one from LaPierre and the NRA. It’s a lot to digest, but it’s critical reading for anyone concerned about the future of the NRA.

I hope to see you in Houston.


NYS Second Amended Complaint against the National Rifle Association, May 2022

2020 People of the State of NY v NRA & Co May 2022 Amended


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.org.

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Clyde

“NY AG Letitia James hates the NRA and all it stands for, and she wants to see it destroyed.” It would be nice if it were that simple. The problem is what the NRA really stands for, is compromise on gun legislation, not defending gun freedoms. Moreover, the NRA has no agenda to repeal any of the laws the ILA has helped to get enacted. So, it’s more like DA James probably hates what the majority of misinformed NRA members want to believe the NRA stands for. So, that’s an interesting paradox. Given the NRA’s weak efforts to defend gun… Read more »

shiftless

After getting a new executive vice-president, a good place to start would be to reduce the size of the board of directors to a working number say 10 or 15 at the most. I want a board that makes or approves executive decisions and knows what’s going on. Let Phil Journey do for the NRA what he has done for Kansas gun owners. Thank you Your Honor!

Carl up North

I’m an Endowment Life Member and I want Wayne gone. I currently donate nothing to the Association since Wayne’s criminal conduct and fleecing became known. If New York AG gets him and his facilitators to repay the Association and out of power the better.

JPM

LaPierre is still milking his personal cash cow and will continue to do so as long as he can. Wayne gives a new meaning to the term, “Career Criminal”. I’m sure he realizes that he doesn’t have long in his position as a petty dictator and defalcator of the NRA so he’s plundering and stashing all he can before he goes. Wayne knows that once he’s gone he won’t have to worry about paying anything back or being held accountable for his actions at NRA, knowing that he has continued his thievery for decades and no one has been able… Read more »

ralph

Member of NRA since the early 1950s, presently Patron Life Member. I agree totally with Jeff’s column. There is no American patriot that I admire more than Lt. Col. Allen West and I strongly endorse him for NRA Executive Director, should he be interested. Lt. Col. Oliver North apparently smelled something rotten in the NRA structure and he retired as president not very long after accepting the position.

Orion

James has made it her LIFE to crush the NRA. i first signed up when Wayne took the helm and have watched him go toe to toe against many anti 2A politicians. yes, he has embarrassed us a few times but no one …NO ONE… has faced the political challenges of the socialists in congress and performed better on any fundamental right. as another commentor noted, West left Florida and came to Texas only to make feeble attempt to unseat Gov Abbot and for what reason? Abbot has been fantastic on every issue relating to our Second Amendment and now… Read more »

Russn8r

He didn’t leave to unseat Abbott. He left long ago. The establishment treats well-spoken true conservatives, especially fugitive blacks, as their main enemy & threat to Great Reset. So Abbott outspent 10-1.

“NO ONE faced the challenges of socialists in congress & did better on any fundamental right.”

BS!

He gives faux A grades to socialist gun grabbers, helped “pro-gun champion” Harry Reid “fix” Obamacare so it passed by ONE vote, helped him defeat Tea Party Sharron Angle by a few votes ETC

Corrupt LaPewCo has nearly ended NRA & facilitated The Big Steal.

NO ONE’s done WORSE

Last edited 12 days ago by Russn8r
ahhiyawa

LaPierre transformed the NRA from a sportsman, educational, training & civil liberties association into a sycophantic, servile Republican front group that relentlessly sabotaged 2nd amendment rights for RINO’s and anti gun Republicans.

Ope

The only thing Lapierre has done is transform the former NRA into a criminal enterprise. If he cared as much about the NRA as he and some others have claimed, he would had resigned at least a decade ago.He doesn’t. The only thing that SOB cares about is himself and bank account. That parasite has betrayed members and the 2A for decades and continues to. Justice will only happen when that bastards name becomes a number in prison.

shiftless

This site will not record my up vote! It shows 0 votes and says I have already voted.

F Riehl, Editor in Chief

New account issue, Try it now

Nanashi

Fantastic? Is that what we call Abbot telling the state legislature to “consider” gun bans after the El Paso shooting?

Orion

lol… your Democratic legislators from the el paso area submitted 19 proposed new restrictions on firearms and abbott supported zero. no red flag, no weapon ban, no halt to private sales. none of those proposed went anywhere.
Abbott did support the idea of allowing individuals access to a NICS like system to prevent privately owned weapons from falling into the wrong hands and im good with that. no responsible owner wants to feed the cartels or illegal aliens. do you??

Russn8r

Your NRA ensures “carry” laws include a patchwork-quilt of “gun free” zones that facilitate massacres like El Paso, Orlando, Parkland & VA Tech.

On lockdowns, mandates, gun control, invasion-occupation, abolishing property tax, banning child sex changes, school choice vouchers ETC Abbott pretends to want to do the right thing only under heavy pressure from real conservatives in an election cycle.

Russn8r

Abbott tested the waters for red flag after a school shooting, but…

“[Red Flag] is opposed by Jack Wilson who returned fire at his church & Stephen Willeford who confronted the gunman in a shooting that left 26 parishioners dead.”

“If somebody wants a gun they can get it, red flag laws or not.” -Wilson

“Concerned” about private sales & AWs:

“One stranger can sell a gun to another stranger & that’s a danger. There were several strategies about assault weapons on the table we will continue to talk about.” ~Abbott

shiftless

I would like to see individual access to a NCIS like system on the federal level provided it did not record the contact. Why can’t the individual print the ok sale notice and provide that if he is questioned about what happened to a firearm that traces to him? There should be no requirement that he keep the ok sale notice.

Russn8r

Look up “Blind Identification Database System” vs NICS.

Russn8r

LaPew’s vampires don’t care about NRA except as a piggy bank to loot. She may end up saving it, taking corrupt scalps for show, nailing the crooks personally for restitution. Your BFF Lucky Pierre (optional La) will get it up the a… Oh wait. He probly likes that. Never mind…

Last edited 11 days ago by Russn8r
Old Guy

I am an endowment member and been a member since 1965, Life since 1975 but I will not give any money as long as Wayne and the rt of the crew are still there. Get rid of them and show us that we are not Wayne’s personal money tree

PMinFl

I like LTCol West, I wouldn’t wish the failing NRA upon him.

swmft

but he can likely rally troops and get the the right people in position to turn the ship about and keep it from foundering …military usually give the hard jobs to those that can handle them

Last edited 11 days ago by swmft
shiftless

I think the NRA can be saved but I’m working with Gun Owners of America now.

Steve

I’m an NRA life member. This year (2022) I did the bullet vote for Frank Tait for NRA board of directors. I no longer answer NRA fund raiser calls or return their mail back stuff. I look forward to the Reform Candidates for the 2023 election.

DIYinSTL

For the first time in years the NRA called this Patron Life member to offer a really sweet deal on upgrading my membership to the next level. I told the caller I was really excited to hear from them and asked “when was Wayne fired or did he just quit?” The caller sounded puzzled so I explained that I had told the NRA several years ago to not call me back until Wayne was fired. She sighed, told me to hold on a moment and then transferred me to a prerecorded message defending Wayne so I promptly hung up. Put… Read more »

Last edited 12 days ago by DIYinSTL
Montana454Casull

The reason Waine is still there is called fraud , the same reason Brandon is occupying the oval office.

Hazcat

West has nor impressed me in his political career. Ran from the fight in FL when he got gerrymandered, in TX said he would fix the state R party, left that position before a year to run for office and failed.
Not a very good record. Looks more like grifting to me and the NRA already has that well covered.

Jaque

As a life member I no longer take calls from NRA fund raisers nor do I return their costly mailers with checks enclosed. Lapierre should fall on his sword and dissapear. While I wont be making it to Houston I would support Allen West without reservation.

Russn8r

Endowment here. I take the mags by mail bc each one = $3 less for Lucky (La)Pierre. Fun to send in the PPD postcards too, signed, “Hugh Jorgan”.

Go West!

Henry Bowman

Or Benjamin Dover… more appropriate, considering what WLP has been doing to the NRA for a couple decades now!

Russn8r

LOL, true.

Barry McCaulkinem.

Or Wayne’s nickname: Lucky Pierre. (The La is optional).

Russn8r

Downvoters want McCaulkinem.

john

Money greed power that does it
Thank you

Roverray

I’m a life time member of the NRA. The voting process is a big sham. We can vote for board members but nobody else and even that is pointless, pick 35 out of 41 picks usually per ballot. I keep my membership alive, but that’s it.

DIYinSTL

I can’t attend this year but will in 2023 which I believe is in Indianapolis 14-16 April. Along with change in the BoD, we need each ballot to contain a confidence/no-confidence vote for every executive in the organization.