An Open Letter From NRA Staffers To The Board

I received this open letter to the NRA Board within the last hour. It is reportedly from current and former NRA staffers who are fed up with Charles Cotton, Bill Brewer, and most of the upper management of the NRA. The level of detail in the letter is enough to convince me it is real such as Sonya Rowling being forced to cut a check to Brewer by Andrew Arulanadam. I learned of that just earlier this afternoon.

Here is the letter in its unedited entirety. Given it is an open letter, it is meant for sharing. You might want to share it with each and every Board member that you know. I know they sent it to the NRA email address for the Board but I doubt it will be routed to Board members before their 9am CDT meeting tomorrow in Dallas.

Dear NRA Board of Directors,

We are writing as current and former NRA staff members. We choose to remain anonymous due to the almost certain retaliation from NRA executives and the Brewer firm. Since 2018, our association has been in complete peril, and no one has asked the NRA’s staff for their input. We are the ones who work day in and day out to accomplish the NRA’s mission of promoting the safe and responsible use of firearms and defending the Second Amendment. Meanwhile, it has become clear that NRA’s executives and officers are focused on ensuring a steady revenue stream for the Brewer firm. We pose this question: When will we stop the bleeding, and when is enough, enough?

Over the past six years, the NRA has become unrecognizable. The NRA of 2018 is far different from the NRA of 2024, and this convention hall is proof. This deterioration is due to the NRA’s poor leadership. President Cotton, Andrew Arulanandam, Randy Kozuch, Tyler Schropp, Doug Hamlin, and Sonya Rowling have not, and arguably never have, acted in the best interest of NRA members. The NRA’s recent misfortunes are often blamed on the New York Attorney General. While we are no fans of Letitia James, 90% of the NRA’s issues are now self-inflicted. Yes, AG James has had a gun pointed at the NRA from the start of her campaign, but NRA’s leadership continues to hand her magazines with ammunition.

We will briefly discuss each leader, avoiding rehashing old issues.

President Cotton has overseen many of the NRA’s poor decisions over the years on the Audit Committee, the SLC, and as President. It’s time to change his title from president to king because he is acting as a monarch. King Charles has been positioning himself to become executive vice president and chief executive officer. Anyone familiar with his record at the NRA knows he is not the right fit for EVP. The new NRA EVP needs to be unapologetically pro-gun, innovative, politically connected, and experienced in turning around failing organizations. King Charles is not that person. His primary focus is on maintaining his relationship with the Brewer firm. Recent reports confirmed by the Brewer firm show that King Charles and Bill Brewer even fly on private jets together. The firm claims this saves the NRA money, but this is unlikely. While the firm may not directly bill the NRA for the jet, there is nothing to stop them from increasing their billable hours. This is reminiscent of the MMP yacht situation. King Charles and Bill Brewer are the only ones pushing for the move to Texas because they are both based there. No other staff member, including NRA’s Interim CEO Andrew Arulanandam, plans on moving to Texas. King Charles’s goal is to secure a high salary for a few years as his retirement fund.

Andrew Arulanandam cannot make a good decision to save his life. Since taking his position on February 1, the NRA has continued to decline. Arulanandam exists in his position solely to follow King Charles’s orders and maintain the relationship with the Brewer firm. In fact, Arulanandam reportedly forced Sonya Rowling to pay Brewer millions of dollars today before tomorrow’s board meeting. If King Charles becomes EVP, Arulanandam will be rewarded and return to his high-paying job as executive director of General Operations, with an updated salary and maximized pension at retirement.

Randy Kozuch has been consistently overlooked throughout his career at the NRA. Kozuch is not a leader, and most of the ILA staff don’t respect him. Kozuch is a yes-man. Shortly after becoming executive director of ILA, Wayne asked him for millions from the ILA budget to keep the NRA afloat. Kozuch complied, and his newly hired ILA Finance Director quit after the first week due to discomfort. This wasn’t the first time the NRA asked ILA for millions, and Kozuch complies every time. King Charles, Bill Brewer, and Arulanandam don’t respect Kozuch; he is just the perfect puppet to help pay off Brewer’s excessive bills.

The other executives are equally ineffective. Tyler Schropp, the highest-paid executive at the NRA, can barely raise money without Wayne. Doug Hamlin operates entirely in the red and doesn’t know how to run an organization. Sonya Rowling is only in her position because she is a “whistleblower,” which looked good for the Brewer firm to show a course correction. However, she is inexperienced and would run the organization into the ground without realizing it.

Finally, the Brewer firm is the most ineffective and corrupt part of the NRA. Bill Brewer excels at one thing: losing. He flaunts the money he has taken, pulling up to the hotel this weekend in an Aston Martin while losing consistently. And he is Angus McQueen’s son-in-law. The NRA has funded the McQueen/Brewer family feud for too long, at the expense of our members who faithfully support us.

Board members, when is enough, enough? You are the only ones who can stop this. Charles Cotton is not fit for EVP. Andrew Arulanandam is not fit for EVP. No one at the NRA is currently fit for EVP. The Texas move is a waste of money and unnecessary. The Brewer firm is ripping the NRA off for every dollar we have. The NRA is failing. Revenue is failing, membership numbers are falling, ILA’s power is a fraction of what it used to be, and other training organizations are outpacing us. It is so bad that NRA is liquidating investments to continue paying Brewer. We beg you, as you go into the meeting tomorrow, to stop the bleeding and hold Charles Cotton, Andrew Arulanandam, and the other officers accountable.

Save the National Rifle Association of America.

UPDATE: I was just sent what is purported to be the official portrait of NRA President Charles Cotton which will hang in the NRA headquarters building in Fairfax or Texas if they ever move.

Not Willing To Be The Fall Guy For Barr

Bruce Widener, an NRA Board member, who was involved when the Bob Barr negligent discharge took place has refused to be the fall guy for him. I wrote about this negligent discharge earlier this week when discussing the two camps heading into the NRA Annual Meeting. He has since written an email about the incident and wishes it to go public.

At the time of the incident, Mr. Widener said he had removed the magazine but hadn’t checked the chamber. This made it seem like he had failed in his duty to make sure the weapon was safe and that Barr was unknowingly handling a loaded firearm. However, that was not the real story as the email that Mr. Widener has asked be made public makes clear.

After reading the email one is left wondering why Bill Brewer has such an interest in making sure that Bob Barr is the next NRA President. Is there a quid pro quo in effect saying I’ll protect you if you guarantee that I am retained as outside counsel to the NRA? Has the Cabal assured Brewer that he will be kept on and he can keep billing at his astronomic rates until such time as the NRA is out of money? I can understand Barr wanting it swept under the rug as he violated multiple rules of gun safety any which way you look at it.

Here is the email Mr. Widener sent out on it on Thursday evening. Read it in its entirety misspellings and all.

From: Bruce Widener <>
Sent: Thursday, May 16, 2024 20:25

Subject: The facts re: bob barr

The facts:

8th draft. 

Before sending this out please let me know so you have the latest version. 

This is the first time I have written a detailed report of what exactly happened in 2002 with the incident involving Congressman Bob Barr.  I’m telling this now because it has become an issue in his election effort for president of the NRA.  It all started when I became aware of the email that was sent out recently with copies of the articles about the incident. 

I saw Mr Barr in person in Atlanta and said that I had received an email that had been sent to various NRA board members which contained many of the articles about the incident. Mr Barr said that he had not  seen it and asked that I send it to him.  I then hand delivered a note to him marked ‘personal and confidential. For your eyes only’! Instead of talking to me about the note, Mr Barr must have given it to his/NRA’s attorney, Bill Brewer, who called me to talk about it.  He knew about everything in the note. After we talked by phone He called again and wanted to talk to me in Dallas.  Ashley and I then met with Mr Brewer .  Since Mr Barr on obviously doesn’t want to talk to me, he asked his attorney to talk to me about it then I feel I am free to go public and tell the whole story with all of the details to whoever wants to hear it. Here is what actually happened!!

In 2002, my wife, Ashley, and I had a fundraiser at my house for congressman Bob Barr (who was a sitting congressman and on the NRA board at the time) and was showing him my gun collection. 

I would take pistols out of my safe, remove the magazines and pull the slides back to check the chamber to make sure they were unloaded and safe. 

As I turned my back to say something to my son, Congressman Barr took a pistol out of my safe that I kept loaded in the event that it is needed and he pulled the trigger firing a bullet out a glass door which ricocheted under my wife’s new Lexus!

I actually thought he had shot me in the back! I kept feeling my back and looking for blood. When I turned to face Mr barr he said ‘Oh my’. I said ‘oh shit’! He later aid he was sorry and asked if he could pay for the damages to the door.  

The next day I asked my son if he has seen the spent shell casing? He told me the Congressman had picked it up!

This soon hit all the national news outlets!

Congressman Barr’s campaign attorney called me that day and TOLD me ‘this is what we are going to say! That

I had pulled the magazine out but had not checked the chamber to make sure the pistol was unloaded!! When we were handing the pistol ‘someone’ hit the trigger!

I was never asked what really happened and what I might want to say about it!! From this information all the articles in the various papers were written!

I refused to talk to the media !

22 yrs. ago when this happened, I was a young lobbyist and Mr Barr I was a sitting congressman.  My reputation as a gun person kkwas not nearly as important as his as a US Congressman and an NRA Board member.

I agreed to say things that we both knew were not true. 

Now my reputation and my legacy are at risk and being damaged AND it is much more important to me now as a member of the NRA board. The news articles make me look awfully bad.   I ALWAYS check the chamber and remove the magazines to make sure guns are unloaded and safe which is the key point of the articles.

They had said it was a hundred year old .38 caliber Colt. Actually it was a 1908  .380!

These are the facts which can be verified by son Dr. Douglas B. Widener and my sister and her husband, Mr and Mrs Jack Malott!

A False Flag Operation?

I received an email out of the blue yesterday evening from a supposed NRA staff member based in Fairfax. The email was sent to “undisclosed recipients”. I know one of the recipients was Jeff Knox as he had received the same email and was suspicious about it. The email alleges that private jets are still in use by NRA leaders including Charles Cotton and Randy Kozuch.

Here is the email in its entirety:

nraexposed <>Thu, May 2, 8:01 PM (15 hours ago)

I am a current staff member of NRA based in Fairfax. NRA President Charles Cotton frequently flies on Bill Brewer’s private jet (I don’t know if the jet is owned or chartered). Despite ILA Chief of Operations John Commerford testifying under oath that no one at ILA has flown private since Chris Cox left, this is not true, maybe he was covering for his boss Randy Kozuch, who has flown private dozens of times since Chris Cox left.

Now the question is why Jeff, I, and presumably others are getting such an email on the same day that the results of the 2024 NRA Board election are released and that reformers took three of the top five spots. Moreover, it is from a Proton Mail account in Switzerland which promises “end-to-end encryption and zero-access encryption.”

While the accusation could be true, so what? If the NRA is not charged for any of these flights do we really care if Charles Cotton flies on Brewer’s supposed jet? A check of the FAA records does not find any aircraft owned by William Brewer III. And what is the purpose of trying to implicate Randy Kozuch who seems a decent enough guy in improprieties?

What makes me really suspicious that this is some sort of false flag or disinformation campaign is what happened when I responded to the email suggesting if this really was the case then they ought to contact the NYAG’s Office.

I got this:

Address not found
Your message wasn’t delivered to because the address couldn’t be found, or is unable to receive mail.
The response from the remote server was:
550 5.1.1 : Recipient address rejected: Account recently deleted

The KGB was famous for running false flag operations in order to sow confusion.

What a better time to bait the reformers into making false claims than after they’ve just been elected. I don’t know who is behind this but that seems to be their aim in my opinion.

As I said earlier this week, if you are going to levy criticisms against the existing Board and its leaders, you better have documentation to back it up. An email coming in out of the blue like this making serious accusations is just the sort of thing that demands documentation and it is nowhere to be found.

It’s War! Plus A Warning

There is a war for control of the NRA going on within the Board of Directors. While one could say it started when Wayne LaPierre announced his resignation, it probably started as early as last year when Charles Cotton was given a third term as President and Willes Lee forced out as an officer.

It picked up speed in mid-January when Buz Mills and Marion Hammer within a couple of weeks of one another both called out Charles Cotton’s attempt to become the next permanent CEO and Executive VP of the NRA. This forced Cotton’s hand and he appointed a search committee. The committee as we’ve come to expect is filled with the Old Guard. Even Bill Bachenberg who stayed relatively quiet for years on the Board sent out a letter critical of the search committee.

What had been essentially a Cold War suddenly became a “shooting war” little more than a week ago. That was when Marion Hammer had her contract with the NRA terminated by Interim EVP Andrew Arulanandam. I don’t think anybody believes Arulanandam did this on his own initiative. While we will never know for sure, it more than likely was at the behest of Cotton and Bill Brewer. As “Bitter” posted in the comments to that post, this sent a message to the rest of the Board to back off and don’t question us. If they were willing to take down someone presumably as powerful as Marion, lesser Board members don’t stand a chance to oppose them.

Al Hammond, who is presumably Camp Marion, lobbed a bomb into Camp Cotton-Brewer this past Wednesday where he questioned the leadership of the officers and asserted they were not told the real consequences of the New York trial. The next day a new email went out signed by all three officers – Cotton, Bob Barr, and David Coy – which, among other things, accused Hammond on “peddling partial information and NYAG propaganda” and told recipients to go to the NRA’s own “legal facts” website. In my opinion, any Board member who relied solely on that website would have thought the NRA won the case when the reality is that they lost on most issues.

Willes Lee jumped in yesterday with a Facebook post concerning both Hammond’s email and the officers’ response.

The morning calm of the grazing flock was broken by the shrill clarion cry “Circle them wagons.”

Many NRA Board members (incl me) didn’t know of ‘the missive’ until The Three … NRA officers (gaily signed “Charles, Bob, David”) sent an email disparaging the author as ‘misinformation, disinformation, misled, manipulated, troubling, peddling partial information, distorted’ (whew, all in one email). The Three… told us ask THEM for “honest communications”(!) and directed us to our legal-spin blog & scripted legal affairs meetings. #nothingchanged

You can’t make up this stuff.

Marion Hammer was not done either. On Saturday, she sent an email questioning compensation at the NRA. This was followed on Sunday by a brutal article in the Washington Post concerning Brewer’s influence at the NRA. While no more missives have gone out from either Camp Marion or Camp Cotton-Brewer, with the NRA Annual Meeting just a little over two weeks away this is probably the quiet before the storm.

Now to the warnings. First it is becoming evident that Cotton and Brewer are trying to find out who is leaking their emails. At least two different copies of the Cotton-Barr-Coy response were sent out. There were possibly more but I do know of two for sure.

Second, and this goes for all critics of the existing Board, you must have the documentation to back up what you are saying about them. Not having backup documentation will only provide ammo to the Old Guard aka the Cabal. I am aiming this comment at a claim made by Willes Lee yesterday. He asserted a fundraising letter went out in March listing Cotton as EVP. While I have no problem with Lee pointing out the foibles of Charles Cotton and others of his ilk on the Board and am actually somewhat amused by it, you have to be able to prove it. Unfortunately, no one including Lee seems to be able to locate their copy of that letter. It would suck to have to take back such a damaging claim.

I am neither in Camp Marion nor Camp Cotton-Brewer but rather in Camp NRA Member. My hopes for the Board to do what is right faded a long time ago. It sucks to have to rely on a court in New York City to remedy things but it is what it is.

Marion Hammer’s NRA Contract Terminated

Monday is turning out to be a big news day. I was just sent an email that said Interim NRA EVP Andrew Arulanadam had terminated Marion Hammer’s contract. The email was from Marion Hammer to John Frazer bitterly complaining that her contract had been terminated with four years left to go.

From the email:

From: marion hammer <>
Date: April 22, 2024 at 12:07:03 PM CDT
To: John Frazer <>
Subject: NRA has dumped me

Today Andrew Aarulanandam called me and terminated my retirement contract with NRA.

Earlier, Randy Kozuch, ED-ILA suddenly quit providing grants to pay my monthly salary (last December 2023).

That leaves me totally without employment or retirement income. 

I was hired by NRA in September 1978 by NRA CEO Harlan Carter and the NRA Executive Director of ILA  — over 45 years ago  I was instructed to set up and run Unified Sportsmen of Florida (USF) as the Florida arm of  NRA and to also lobby for USF/NRA.  I was promised that a grant would be provided to USF to pay my salary as long as I was employed by USF.

Every ED-ILA since then has honored that promise. Until last year when Randy Kozuch broke that promise and simply quit providing the grant to pay my monthly salary. He didn’t fire me, he just quit paying me.   

In other words, I have not had a monthly paycheck since November 2023.  

Nonetheless, I have continued to work for NRA and train the NRA designated replacement lobbyist.  Who,  by-the-way, is a fine young man and who works for Randy Kozuch, and to my knowledge, is not a part of this.

I have survived on the retirement income contract that Wayne LaPierre put in place for me in 2018,

Today, April 22, 2024,  Andrew Aarulanandam, with Vanessa Shahidi in the room, called and informed me that he had decided to terminate the retirement contract that Wayne LaPierre put in place for me in 2018.

The 10-year contract was actually a replacement for the NRA retirement program which I had not been allowed to participate in.  The contract (with 4 years remaining) was to provide retirement income since I had never been included in NRA’s retirement program.

I have faithfully served NRA and NRA members for well over 40 years. As of today, I am no longer being compensated for the work NRA hired me to do.  I have not been fired, they have just quit paying me. 

I just thought you’d like to know what those in charge are doing to those who have faithfully served NRA and our cause.

Bottom line, as of today, I have no employment income and no retirement income.

Later this week (April 26th) I’ll be 85 years old.  So much for over 40 years of dedicated service and work for NRA.


Marion P. Hammer

I sincerely doubt that Arulanadam unilaterally made this decision on his own. It leaves me to wonder if this was Bill Brewer’s doing or whether NRA President Charles Cotton was behind this. It could have been the two in combination.

You will remember that Marion called out Cotton’s EVP search committee in February and earlier in January had called for a search committee to fill the spot. The January missive was a shot across the bow of those who were trying to install Cotton as the successor EVP. Marion’s February email to the Board also said she didn’t think any internal NRA candidate, e.g., Arulanadam, was qualified to fill the EVP spot.

I really could not be more surprised by this contract termination than if you told me Kris Brown of Brady was going to be the next EVP.

Will Texas Politics Impact NRA EVP Succession?

With so much attention focussed on the trial involving the NRA in New York City, scant attention has been paid to who succeeds Wayne LaPierre as CEO and Executive Vice President of the NRA. I think most observers would agree that Andrew Arulanandam, who will serve as the interim EVP upon Wayne’s January 31st resignation, is a place holder and not a serious contender for the permanent position.

An article by Stephen Gutowski in The Reload posted today may give some clue as to a potential successor. After discussing what I called “the dueling letters” regarding post-employment compensation and health issues of Wayne, Gutowski provides this potential clue.

Prominent NRA supporters have already begun publicly circulating at least one alternative. Former NRA Institute of Legislative Action deputy executive director and general counsel Wade Callender, who helped coordinate with the group’s state affiliate in the successful 2022 Supreme Court Bruen case, has already received the backing of several elected officials. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R.) and State Senator Drew Springer (R.) posted a call for Callender to take over the NRA’s top perch on social media this week.

Callender left the position as General Counsel and Deputy Executive Director of NRA-ILA due, in large part, to the growing interference from the NRA’s outside counsel William Brewer III. Callender confirmed this to me in a face-to-face conversation we held at the 2022 Gun Rights Policy Conference held in Irving, Texas. He has since returned to private practice in Dallas area.

Texas AG Ken Paxton has been a stalwart supporter of the Second Amendment and has signed on to a number of amicus briefs in support of it. Paxton, who was last year impeached by the Texas House of Representatives, was acquitted on all charges in the trial in the Texas Senate. The move to impeach Paxton was led by Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan who is his arch political enemy. Phelan, who is considered a RINO by Texas conservatives, and has been asked to resign by the leaders of the Texas Republican Party.

After the murders of school children in Uvalde, Phelan formed a House Select Committee on Community Safety to review all firearms-related legislation. This included red flag laws and raising the age to purchase a modern sporting rifle. While the committee composition was officially seven Republicans and six Democrats, the Republican chair had been a Democrat until just recently.

With this as a background, Randy Kozuch, Executive Director of NRA-ILA and Chairman of the NRA-PVF, endorsed Dade Phelan and rated him A+.

This brought pushback from a number of conservatives including Dana Loesch who served as a special assistant to Wayne at one time. She said of Phelan that he “was an obstacle while fighting red flag laws, and dragged out our fight to win Constitutional carry.” Others are saying they are dropping their NRA membership or looking for alternatives.

One must wonder who pushed Randy Kozuch to give an A+ rating to Phelan who by most accounts is a RINO and who is marginal on gun rights. Was it the Old Guard on the NRA led by NRA President Charles Cotton who is a Texan? Was it Bill Brewer who saw an ally in a RINO politician who was barely so-so on gun rights? If Brewer, was it with knowledge that it would anger true Second Amendment supporters in Texas?

Giving Phelan the A+ rating and endorsement obviously angered his arch-enemies Ken Paxton and Sen. Drew Springer as the next day they endorsed Wade Callender for EVP. This move by Paxton and Springer is definitely a call for new blood to lead the NRA and a repudiation of the Old Guard.

A New Double Secret NRA Lawsuit Against AckMac?

The NRA filed a lawsuit against Ackerman McQueen, Mercury Group, and Tony Makris in the US District Court for the Northern District of Texas. According to the case’s docket number, it was filed sometime in 2022 and it was assigned to Senior Judge A. Joe Fish. The other known facts about the case are that they subpoenaed Tony Makris’ wife Elicia Warner Loughlin for documents and the case is being handled as you’d expect by Brewer, Attorneys and Counselors.

And that concludes what is public knowledge about the case because it appears to be under seal.

Knowledge that the case even existed is due to an article in The Trace by Will Van Zant posted on Thursday. You may not like that he reports for The Trace but he does get his facts correct. He discovered the case when he stumbled across a motion to quash the subpoena to Makris’ wife. That motion was filed in US District Court in South Carolina. Even knowing this, it took me several tries before I could find the motion.

According to the motion to quash the subpoena, it is contended that the subpoena is burdensome because it is overbroad and it asks for information of which she has no knowledge. Her attorney also contends that the subpoena’s secondary purpose is to annoy, embarrass, and harass Ms. Loughlin merely because Tony Makris is her husband. The motion notes that much of the information requested had already been provided to the NRA in their suit against Under Wild Skies in Virginia state court. It should be noted that the NRA lost that case and had to pay a little over a half million in damages to Under Wild Skies. In addition to what was previously provided to the NRA, Brewer is now demanding Ms. Loughlin’s personal and business tax returns for the years 2009-2018.

Ms. Loughlin is also asking for a protective order. As her attorney notes:

UWS is not a party to the above captioned litigation. Mrs. Loughlin is not affiliated with any of the Defendants, except for being married to Mr. Makris. The NRA is going to have to state with some clarity how seeking nine (9) years of tax returns from Mrs. Loughlin and her unaffiliated business entity is in any way related to the sealed action pending in Texas. The same would need to apply to the request for her deposition as she has already sat for a deposition at the request of this same party, the NRA. Quite frankly
nothing has changed since the first time she sat other than the fact that we have a new lawsuit in a different jurisdiction.

At this point it should be pointed out that not only did the NRA lose to Under Wild Skies in state court but ended up settling with AckMac to the tune of $12 million in their previous Federal lawsuit against them.

In his article about the current lawsuit, Van Zant reached out to Judge Phil Journey for comment. Phil said it seemed crazy to him and that if the facts aren’t on your side, you resort to BS.

An expert on sealed cases, Prof. Jane Kirtley of the University of Minnesota said there were usually only three reasons for a case to be sealed: to protect personal privacy, national security, or trade secrets. Prior to coming to the University of MN, Kirtley was the Executive Director of The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press

Van Zant quotes her as saying:

Simply wanting to avoid attention is not a valid basis, she said. “People that have disputes don’t have to use courts to settle them, they have other options,” Kirtley said. “The price of admission ought to be that the filing of a lawsuit is a matter of public record, and that if elements of a case are sealed, it’s only for legitimate reasons.”

Kirtley added:

Although judges are not supposed to seal cases merely because the parties would prefer anonymity, Kirtley said that too often they do. “Judges concentrate on the parties before them,” Kirtley said, “and if the parties are content with or agitating for secrecy, some courts don’t care and just go along to get along. But that ignores the fact that the public has an interest in open courts, in how cases proceed, in whether one party gets a break and another does not.”

Having searched for the case under its docket number (3:22-CY-1944-G) as well as a search by name in Pacer, I can confirm what Van Zant has said. No public record of this case can be found. Like him, I found that incredibly strange.

So to conclude, I have a handful of questions.

What is the purpose of this lawsuit by the NRA?

How much is Brewer making as a result of bringing another case against his late father-in-law’s company?

Why is it sealed?

And most importantly, is anyone on the Board of Directors even aware that the NRA is suing Ackerman McQueen again?

The NRA Needs Its Own Independence Day

The National Rifle Association filed their own challenge to the BATFE pistol brace ban yesterday. This was after their attempt to intervene in SAF et al v. BATFE was denied as not timely among other reasons.

The NRA has and has had many excellent Second Amendment attorneys at their disposal. These include scholars such as Stephen Halbrook and David Kopel, appellate attorneys such as Paul Clement and Erin Murphy, and others such as Chuck Michel, David Jensen, and Dan Schmutter. In the past I would have also included the attorneys from Cooper and Kirk but they were considered “disloyal” by Wayne and Company and purged.

So who did they choose to handle their own challenge to the BATFE pistol brace ban? It had to be someone other than the attorney who just lost their motion to intervene, right?

Sadly, they went with William Brewer III again. Instead of going with a strong 2A attorney, they went with the attorney whose primary purpose seems to be to keep Wayne out of jail while getting as rich as possible in the process.

Why I don’t know and no one is saying. Even former 1st VP Willes Lee who has gone from stalwart Friend of Wayne to outspoken critic of the old guard is asking why.

Brewer seems to have the same insidious influence on Wayne and the Board as Rasputin did on Nicholas II and Alexandra. We all know how that ended for the Romanov Dynasty.

The NRA needs to declare its independence from Bill Brewer before he does any more damage to the organization – and the Second Amendment. Unfortunately, as things stand now, I see Brewer riding off into the sunset richer than ever and the NRA in shambles.

NRA’s Attempt To Intervene Denied

The NRA sought to intervene in the Second Amendment Foundation’s case entitled Second Amendment Foundation et al v. BATFE. (corrected case title) This is a case challenging the Biden pistol-brace ban. As with Mock v. Garland, the plaintiffs including all members of the Second Amendment Foundation were covered by the injunction against the enforcement of the pistol-brace ban while the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals is taking up the issue. When the NRA sought to intervene, the Second Amendment Foundation did not oppose this motion but it was opposed by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.

At this point, I think it is important to note that the brief and motion of the NRA seeking intervenor status in this case was signed by William Brewer III as the attorney of record. At the time the NRA filed to intervene, I found it more than surprising as Brewer has little to no expertise in Second Amendment law.

Today in a 12 page Memorandum Opinion and Order, US District Court Judge Jane Boyle denied the NRA’s motion for intervenor status. The net result is that NRA members are not covered by the injunction against enforcement of the pistol-brace ban.

The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure allow intervention by another party in two ways. One is by right and the second is by permission of the judge if he or she finds it warranted.

An intervention by right must be timely. That is a threshold requirement which must be met. Judge Boyle found the NRA’s motion was not timely. After reviewing some of the history of this case which began long before the pistol-brace ban was even finalized, she concluded:

On those facts alone, it is hard to conclude that the NRA’s Motion to Intervene is timely. But the unusual circumstances of this case further militate against such a finding. Specifically, despite knowing of the Rule and Plaintiffs’ limited injunction request, the NRA only sought to intervene once this Court granted Plaintiffs’ motion for preliminary injunction pending the Fifth Circuit appeal in Mock. To find intervention timely under these circumstances would seemingly incentivize “injunction shopping” among putative intervenors seeking to challenge agency actions.

Judge Boyle goes on to add that the NRA knew of the BATFE’s proposed rule for more than a year before it moved to intervene. She then goes on to say that the interests of the NRA members will be adequately represented by the plaintiffs in this case.

In terms of the case for a permissive intervention, Judge Boyle found the same considerations that prevented intervention by right also applied here. Namely that the NRA’s interests are adequately represented by the existing plaintiffs. She notes that any ruling to the contrary would create a “perverse” precedent for potential intervenors to go case shopping for cases where a preliminary injunction had already been granted. Accordingly, she denied the NRA’s motion to intervene on both by right and by permission.

Given this ruling, the NRA will need to hope for success in their case in North Dakota which they are backing. That case, Firearms Regulatory Accountability Coalition v. Garland, does not seem to have any injunctions issued as of now.

Chalk up this denial as another loss in court by Bill Brewer while representing the NRA and taking as much of the member’s money as possible.

NRA Moves Of Note

Two interesting developments concerning the NRA crossed my desk today. One was expected in the sense that the position had to be filled and the other has me wondering.

First, Randy Kozuch has been appointed to be the Interim Director of the NRA-ILA. The position had to be filled with someone after Jason Ouimet left as the Director of the ILA. There are boards and foundations within the NRA that specify the Director of the ILA must be a member. If I remember correctly, Kozuch was a candidate for the position when Chris Cox resigned. He had served as ILA head of state and local affairs.

According to the press release, Kozuch has been with the NRA for 29 years and had “overseen state lobbying efforts in all 50 state legislatures and served as the primary point of contact between NRA and the nation’s governors and state constitutional officers.” I will leave that statement there as is and refrain from any comments on his effectiveness in North Carolina.

The second development is of far more interest. A “Dear Director” email went out today from former NRA President David Keene. Under the current bylaws (Article V, Sec. 1 (a)), the president of the NRA “may not succeed himself or herself more than once, after being elected to serve a full term.” There is an exception made in the bylaws for the late Charlton Heston who was allowed to succeed himself up to four times.

A resolution is being submitted by Carol Frampton and Joel Friedman that would waive this limitation for current NRA President Charles Cotton and allow him to serve a third one-year term as President. The email from Keene is below:

Dear Fellow NRA Director.

This morning’s mail brought a copy of the resolution submitted by Carol Frampton and Joel Friedman to extend NRA President Charles Cotton’s term for another year. We will be asked to vote on this resolution at the Indianapolis Board meeting and it is my hope that you will join me in supporting it.

As a former NRA President, I can tell you that during challenging times, I know of no one in that job who would want an additional year on the firing line, but sometimes sacrifices are necessary for the good of the association membership and the Second Amendment. As a competent and careful attorney, himself, Charles has been a steady helmsman during the legal battles in which we have been enmeshed during his term. These battles should wind down over the course of the next year and he should be there to serve our interests during this crucial period. He deserves our thanks not just for what he’s accomplished thus far but for his willingness to allow us to ask him to carry on for another year.

David A. Keene

I find this quite interesting. It engenders a lot of questions as to the reasons behind this move. I don’t have any answers to them. Cotton’s term as President would normally end in April at the next Board meeting. At that time, First VP Willes Lee would be the successor to Cotton as President and David Coy would move into Lee’s position. A new Second VP would be selected at that time.

One potential reason, and the most innocent, is that the terms of office were interrupted during the pandemic years of 2020 and 2021. The Annual Meeting happened later in the year which screwed things up a bit.

It could also be that Wayne and Brewer prefer to keep Cotton in the position while the New York proceedings are active. As Brewer plays Rasputin to Wayne’s Czar Nicholas II, this is believable. The shots are being called by Brewer and the Board does what they are told to do by Wayne.

Another alternative is that there is a faction who want to prevent Willes Lee from assuming the position of President of the NRA. His past actions as the leadership’s number two hatchet man (Marion Hammer holds the number one position) are coming back to bite him. I have referred to Lee as the Spiro Agnew of the NRA in the past. While that might be an insult to Agnew, Lee has served that role as Agnew did Nixon.

In the end, if this email is being sent out now, it is a fait accompli or done deal. The overwhelming majority of the Board does what it is told like obedient children. There are only a few members who have rocked the boat and they will be off the Board come the Annual Meeting. The sad thing is I have more faith in NY Assistant AG Monica Connell to represent the members of the NRA than I do in the Board.

UPDATE: Here is a copy of the actual resolution. It is a screen shot.

The resolution has been added to the agenda of the Bylaws and Resolutions Committee.