Although the NRA has insisted that it does not receive much money from the gun industry, a new report suggests that those claims are not accurate.
The Violence Policy Center recently released a 20+ page report entitled Blood Money II: How Gun Industry Dollars Fund The NRA. The report details the NRA’s “Corporate Partners Program,” which allows the organization to receive funding directly from corporations.
In its report, the VPC reveals that the NRA inducts those corporate partners that donate over $1,000,000 to the organization into a designation called the “Golden Ring of Freedom.” Included in the Golden Ring Of Freedom are eight corporations involved in the gun industry.
The Freedom Group and Smith & Wesson, two gun manufacturers that have made headlines recently for their products’ involvement in mass shootings, both have donated at least $1 million to the NRA, and both are members of the Golden Ring of Freedom. The Freedom Group is the company that makes the Bushmaster assault weapon that was used by the gunman at Newton, CT’s Sandy Hook Elementary last year. Smith & Wesson is the manufacturer of the assault weapon used in last year’s movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado.
This is the second in a series of detailed reports by The Violence Policy Center, a Washington D.C.-based organization that advocates for gun regulation— essentially the antithesis of the NRA. The group’s new report suggests that the NRA profits off of gun manufacturers, rather than simply advocating in support of the 2nd Amendment.
The report arrived in a tragically timely fashion, as yet another mass-shooting occurred today in Washington’s Navy Yard.
In a column published in the Washington Post prior to the Navy Yard shootings, E.J. Dionne Jr. decried the strength of the gun lobby and its significant financial backing. “The gun lobby has a large base. Those seeking more sensible gun laws still need to build one,” Dionne Jr. wrote. While details of that shooting are still unclear, it's likely to re-ignite the gun control debate that has been the subject of political controversy for the past couple of years.