NRA Files For Bankruptcy, Vows to Reincorporate in Texas

The gun manufacturers' lobbying group, the National Rifle Association (NRA) has filed for voluntary bankruptcy and vowed to reincorporate in Texas, according to a statement released Friday by the NRA's Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre.

"Today, the NRA announced a restructuring plan that positions us for the long-term and ensures our continued success as the nation's leading advocate for constitutional freedom–free from the toxic political environment of New York," LaPierre wrote in his statement, referencing a 2020 lawsuit filed against the group by the state's attorney general.

"The plan can be summed up quite simply: We are DUMPING New York, and we are pursuing plans to reincorporate the NRA in Texas," LaPierre continued.

To facilitate the strategic plan and restructuring, the NRA and one of its subsidiaries filed voluntary chapter 11 petitions in the Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division. LaPierre claimed that organizations sometimes file chapter 11 proceedings "to streamline legal and financial affairs."

NRA National Rifle Association bankruptcy Texas
The National Rifle Association (NRA) has filed for voluntary bankruptcy and vowed to reincorporate in Texas. Alex Wong/Getty

"Our opponents will try to seize upon this news and distort the truth," LaPierre wrote. "Don't believe what you read from our enemies. The NRA is not 'bankrupt' or 'going out of business.' The NRA is not insolvent."

However, in an August 2018 New York state court filing, the NRA said the organization might soon "be unable to exist... or pursue its advocacy mission" because of insurance companies, banks and other businesses refusing to do business with the NRA. The group said the disruptions threatened its ability to maintain its day-to-day operations, magazines, physical headquarters, political efforts and video channel.

President Donald Trump has voiced support for the group reincorporating in Texas, assuming the state's Republican politicians won't interfere with the group. The NRA is currently under investigation by the attorneys general of New York and the District of Columbia for potential tax code violations.

In August 2020, New York Attorney General Letitia James and D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine announced a lawsuit alleging that the non-profit's leaders had funneled millions into their own pockets, including a $500,000 private air charter plane that LaPierre's family flew to the Bahamas at least eight times.

James' lawsuit wanted LaPierre and three of the group's other leaders to make full restitutions for the funds that they had profited from. NRA President Carolyn Meadows called the lawsuits "a baseless, premeditated attack" and "a transparent attempt to score political points and attack the leading voice in opposition to the leftist agenda."

In February 2020, Democratic Congressman Brad Schneider of Illinois filed a report outlining discrepancies between the NRA's disclosures to the IRS and other information about the group's lobbying and other expenses, including the attempted purchase of a $6 million mansion in the Dallas area for the private use of LaPierre. Schneider's report challenged the legality of the group's non-profit status, though the NRA denied wrongdoing.

Newsweek contacted the NRA for comment.