Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison applauded a New York lawsuit that could shut down the National Rifle Association (NRA).
Attorney General Ellison has expressed his disapproval of the NRA before, and is now applauding a lawsuit filed against the organization by New York Attorney General Letitia James. The NRA and Ellison have been at odds for a while, as the group labeled him an anti-Second Amendment radical in 2016. Ellison, meanwhile, has accused the NRA’s leadership of only caring about profits.
“In taking on the NRA, my colleague Attorney General James is fearlessly using those powers to hold them accountable for serious misdeeds and abuses. She’s showing that no organization, no matter how politically powerful, is above the law. I congratulate her for it,” Ellison told WCCO.
The Minnesota Gun Owners Caucus has expressed concern over Ellison’s comments.
“How long before Keith Ellison sues to dissolve pro-gun groups like the Minnesota Gun Owners Caucus?” the group wrote on Twitter.
Ellison called Attorney General James “fearless” in her lawsuit against the NRA, which he previously said is “behind the times” and holds an “extremist position”.
The heads of the NRA and gun manufacturers are only looking out for their own profits. What gives me hope is that we are seeing a real movement to actually end the scourge of gun violence, and it's being led by young people. pic.twitter.com/4LT3vOxTpG— Keith Ellison (@keithellison) February 25, 2018
The lawsuit was filed on the grounds that Wayne LaPierre, CEO of the organization since 1991, has wasted millions of charitable dollars along with other members of the NRA. Specifically, James cited LaPierre’s alleged trips to the Bahamas with NRA funds, his acceptance of hundreds of thousands of dollars in gifts from NRA vendors, and members violating the NRA’s business ethics by increasing financial benefits for board members and former employees.
“Contrary to his statutory duties of care, loyalty and obedience to the mission of the charity, LaPierre has undertaken a series of actions to consolidate his position,” James states in the lawsuit.
The suit claims that the NRA conducts business in a “persistently fraudulent or illegal manner” and accuses the organization of abusing its tax-exempt status.
James also accused NRA leaders of failing to manage the organization’s funds, saying that lavish spending has contributed to its budget falling from a surplus of $28 million in 2015 to a deficit of $36 million in 2018.
Our lawsuit charges the NRA as a whole and four senior leaders, including Wayne LaPierre, with failing to manage the NRA’s funds and failing to follow numerous state and federal laws.— NY AG James (@NewYorkStateAG) August 6, 2020
These actions contributed to the loss of more than $64 million in just three years for the NRA.
“From our cold, dead hands,” the NRA wrote on Twitter after James announced her lawsuit.
President Donald Trump responded to the lawsuit, saying “guns will be taken away, immediately and without notice” under a Joe Biden presidency.
“Just like Radical Left New York is trying to destroy the NRA, if Biden becomes President your great Second Amendment doesn’t have a chance,” said the president. “No police, no guns!”
Just like Radical Left New York is trying to destroy the NRA, if Biden becomes President your GREAT SECOND AMENDMENT doesn’t have a chance. Your guns will be taken away, immediately and without notice. No police, no guns!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 6, 2020