According to a new report by the Washington Post, DC Attorney General Karl Racine is “seeking financial documents from the NRA and its foundation.”
The NRA Foundation, which is the NRA’s primary 501(c)(3) organization, is chartered in Washington, DC. The Washington Post report explained “Racine’s office has jurisdiction over nonprofits and can bring an organization to court to dissolve or place into receivership a nonprofit that misuses funds or does not act in accord with its stated mission.”
In April of 2019, Everytown called for federal and state investigations into the NRA’s tax exempt status and filed a formal complaint with the Internal Revenue Service.
The District of Columbia is now the second jurisdiction to publicly confirm an investigation into the NRA’s adherence to non-profit laws. In the midst of the turmoil at the NRA convention in late-April, New York Attorney General Letitia James also issued subpoenas to the NRA and the NRA Foundation seeking financial records pertaining to the NRA’s tax-exempt status.
And in May, members of the Senate Committee on Finance, Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Robert Menendez (D-NJ) sent letters to LaPierre, former NRA president Oliver North and Ackerman McQueen to turn over “letters, third-party audits, memos and other materials as they look into allegations of self-dealing and examine the NRA’s nonprofit status,” according to the Washington Post. Rep. Brad Schneider (D-IL) also sent a letter to IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig requesting the IRS investigate “recent reports of possible wrongdoing by the National Rifle Association (NRA) which enjoys status as a tax exempt organization under Section 501(c)(4) under the Internal Revenue Code (IRC).”
Washington Post reports:
“The Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia has issued subpoenas to the National Rifle Association of America (NRA) and the NRA Foundation, Inc., as part of an investigation into whether these entities violated the District’s Nonprofit Act,” Racine said in a statement.
“He continued: “We are seeking documents from these two nonprofits detailing, among other things, their financial records, payments to vendors, and payments to officers and directors.”
NRA’s outside counsel responded to the news by saying the group would “cooperate with any appropriate inquiry into its finances,” adding that its “financials are audited and its tax filings are verified by one of the most reputable firms in the world.”
Today’s news is just the latest in a spate of bad news for the NRA. In a matter of weeks, its chief lobbyist, Chris Cox, resigned, major donors vowed to suspend donations unless the NRA’s executive vice president Wayne LaPierre resigns, and the NRA shut down production at NRATV, ending its business relationship with the longtime public relations firm that operates NRATV, Ackerman McQueen.