Highlights from United States Senate

Sens. Wyden, Schumer Send Letter Calling on IRS to Investigate NRA for Possible Tax Law Violations

Letter Follows Release of Senate Finance Committee Minority Staff Report, ‘The NRA and Russia: How a Tax-Exempt Organization Became a Foreign Asset’

U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) sent a letter formally calling on the Internal Revenue Service to investigate whether the NRA violated tax laws and should lose its tax-exempt status as a result.

The letter follows the release of a Senate Finance Committee minority staff report, “The NRA and Russia: How a Tax-Exempt Organization Became a Foreign Asset.” The report, initiated at the request of Senator Wyden, the Senate Finance Committee’s ranking member, was an 18-month investigation into the NRA’s relationship with Russia and potential violations of U.S. tax and sanctions laws. In addition, over the past several months there have been a series of public disclosures and reports revealing substantial evidence of serious and wide-ranging financial impropriety at the NRA – including self-dealing, improper enrichment of organization insiders, conflicts of interest, and violations of the not-for-profit laws.  As a result, there are now active regulatory investigations by the Attorneys General of the District of Columbia and New York State.

The report, released last week, concluded that the “use of [the] NRA’s tax-exempt funds and resources in this manner raise concerns about the use of tax-exempt resources for a non-exempt purpose, private inurement… and prohibited excess benefit transactions.”

In April 2019, Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund filed a complaint about the NRA’s tax-exempt status with the IRS, and called for federal and state investigations into the NRA’s operation as a tax-exempt organization.