Highlights from The New York Times

With NRA in Crisis, Trump Moves Onto “Other Gun Groups”

As the NRA Struggles, President Trump’s Team “Aggressively Reach[es] Out to Other Gun Groups”

According to a new report by the New York Times, the White House and Trump campaign are “hedg[ing] their bets” on the NRA by “aggressively reaching out to other gun groups.” This move by the Trump campaign comes at a time when the NRA is “in a weakened position” due to rampant legal and financial struggles.
The New York Times piece by Danny Hakim, which can be read in full here, tells the full story: 

  • “Amid the N.R.A.’s troubles last year, the White House increased its contacts with other organizations.” These efforts reportedly picked up recently: “Over the past several months, the White House and the Trump campaign have hedged their bets by more aggressively reaching out to other gun groups.” 
  • Alan Gottlieb, head of the Second Amendment Foundation, agreed that the White House is “reaching out to other gun rights groups for this election.” He added that,“The fact [that the White House and Trump campaign] have been reaching out as much as they have been, since things started internally at the N.R.A., one has to assume that they want to stay plugged in to the gun rights constituency.”
  • “[T]he N.R.A. has been in a weakened position. While it played a pivotal role in the 2016 race, spending $30 million to help elect President Trump, it has more recently been sapped by internal dissent, litigation and outside investigations, and was already seen as unlikely to match that figure this year.” The NRA “faced further challenges when the pandemic forced it to cancel its convention, an important source of revenue, as well as a number of fund-raising events, leading to a round of layoffs and to pay cuts of at least 20 percent across the organization.”

In addition to laying off employees, the NRA is facing charges by New York State’s Department of Financial Services, under investigation by the U.S. Senate and attorneys general in New York and DC, and locked in various lawsuits with former partner Ackerman McQueen.