I am so loving this! Although I’ve been saying it for years, I still just can’t get enough of hearing somebody else saying that NRA head Wayne LaDerriere is a lying piece of shit. Especially when they say it publicly. And when they’re actually in a position to know, I feel like I’m watching that video of The Cheeto Prophet trundling up the steps to Air Force One with 10 feet of toilet paper trailing from his heel.
I have written previously, and admittedly gleefully about the sudden implosion of the top ranks of the NRA, especially concerning a world class pissing contest between LaPierre, Ollie North, and the NRA board, over everything from North, to LaPierre’s profligate expense account spending, to backroom groin kicking by NRA board members. I haven’t had this much fun since the last Three Stooges marathon on WGN.
But there’s another component to this whole Golden Corral food fight, and it’s an important one. Right now, the NRA is embroiled in a bitter multi million dollar lawsuit brought by their more than decade long serving ad agency, Ackerman-McQueen, over delinquent payments, as well as an unfair contract cancellation. And just to show how deeply embedded Ackerman-McQueen is at the NRA, they are the ones who have for years run the group’s NRA-TV operation online.
So this information, which has me so excited that I want it to bear my love child, comes from the bestest source of all, official court documents. And as The Daily Beast reported today, this has the potential to turn into a real Godsmack concert mosh pit for the NRA.
In a filing to the court, the NRA asserted that one of the main reasons for the ouster of Lt Colonel Oliver North from the organization was that he had misled LaDerriere during his contract negotiations, by hiding the fact that he was receiving payments from Ackerman-Mcqueen. The obvious inference being that North had a sweetheart “kickback” deal going that he tried to hide. This is important because North is the one who had loudly blown the whistle on LaPierre’s flagrant abuse of NRA funds for personal reasons.
But not so fast, say the Ackerman-McQueen attorneys. In a July 19th court filing, the Ackerman-McQueen attorneys contend not only that the arrangement was known to the NRA board, but that Lapierre himself personally negotiated the deal with North, and was aware of the arrangement, noting it in the contract, as was the NR treasurer, who signed off on North’s contract. And just because LaDerriere is pissing Ackerman-McQueen off, they infer that they have documents to prove it!
Now obviously this is bad news for LaPierre and the NRA in their lawsuit, and God knows I’m getting chills just watching this whole rotten house of cards come tumbling down. But the continued collapse of the NRA spells potentially disastrous consequences for the GOP next November, including Der Gropinfuror.
Because the NRA is a critical linchpin for the GOP. In 2016, the NRA went hog wild over Trump, they contributed more than triple to his campaign what they did in 2012, and publicly touted Hos Lowness as the second coming of Charlton Heston, the Ronald Reagan of NRA membership. But forget about Trump for a moment.
The NRA is critical to the success of the GOP on a fundamental level. For decades, the NRA has kept a gun rights voting “report card,” and GOP candidates have striven to maintain “A+” grades to use to hammer their milquetoast Democratic challengers with. Also, the NRA is a generous donation machine to GOP candidates at the state level, often providing them with a critical spending advantage over their opponents. As such, the GOP has gone “all in” on the NRA in a way they have done with no group other than the evangelicals.
But of equal, if not greater importance to the GOP is the NRA’s influence. The NRA boasts a membership of 7 million members, and touts their ability to deliver those members to GOP candidates. And while 7 million is a healthy chunk for a national election, it is potentially 16,000 votes per district in the 435 House districts, which can change the balance of power in the House. But if this toxic sludge from the self induced immolation of the NRA hierarchy spills over into the public eye, it can cream the GOP, If NRA members start to doubt the wisdom of NRA leaders advising them as to which bullet spewing lawn sprinklers to buy, why should they trust their judgement on which political candidates to vote for? Especially since those candidates seem totally beholden to the cranial rejects at the top of the NRA food chain?
The influence of the NRA on national politics already appears to be on the wane. As I wrote previously, in 2018 exit polling among people who listed gun rights as their highest motivating voting factor, for the first time gun control advocates outnumbered gun rights activists at the polls. And as a result, a whole slew of gun toting GOP incumbents lost their seats. And even if we are blessed enough as a nation to not have to suffer through another school mass shooting, gun control advocates, especially the young advocates spurred on by incidents like Parkland, will only be emboldened. In that previous article, I wrote that national GOP leadership was already worried about the sudden demise of the NRA as a friendly political ally. Hopefully these developments will only increase their trouris. Don’t touch that dial.