minime » Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:49 am wrote:I was just going to post something about this in the 'Better Nature of Humanity' thread.
Washington, D.C. — Today, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington requested the Internal Revenue Service open an examination into the finances of the National Rifle Association after the group failed to disclose more than $33.5 million it spent on political activity over six years. CREW also called on the Federal Election Commission to audit the NRA’s campaign arm, the NRA Political Victory Fund (NRA-PVF), and its lobbying arm, the NRA Institute for Legislative Action (NRA-ILA), after the group apparently violated federal election law by soliciting donations for the NRA-ILA that went instead to the NRA-PVF.
Read the letter to the IRS and supporting exhibits.
Read the letter to the FEC and supporting exhibits.
Between 2008 and 2013, the NRA-ILA, an internal division of the NRA, reported to the FEC and in annual financial statements that it spent more than $33.5 million on political activity. However, for each of those years, the NRA stated on its Form 990 tax return that it did not engage in any political activity at all, and the group did not once file a Schedule C disclosing its political expenditures. This failure to disclose political activity appears to violate federal law and, if it was intentional, could violate several criminal statutes. The NRA blamed the failure to disclose its political activity on a “clerical error” but did not express any intention to amend its Form 990 returns or file Schedule Cs.
“The idea that the NRA, one of the most sophisticated and influential advocacy organizations in the country, doesn’t know how to fill out a simple tax return just does not ring true,” said CREW Executive Director Noah Bookbinder. “The NRA should be transparent about its multi-million dollar investment in politics. It is highly disturbing that the NRA failed to disclose these political activities in its tax filings and then tried to simply wave off such a serious failure to meet its legal obligations.”
The NRA-ILA reported to the FEC nearly $11 million in independent expenditures and member communications expressly advocating election or defeat of candidates for federal office between 2008 and 2013, and disclosed on annual financial statements prepared by an independent auditor spending more than $22.5 million on fundraising and administrative expenses for its political action committee, NRA-PVF, during the same period. All of these expenditures were for political activities that needed to be reported on the organization’s tax filings but were not.
CREW also called on the FEC to audit the NRA-PVF and NRA-ILA because it appears these groups may have solicited donations in violation of federal election law by failing to disclose to donors that their money would be used for political purposes. The NRA also appears to have violated federal election law by soliciting donations from the general public, which it is prohibited from doing as a member organization, and by failing to disclose the employer and/or occupation of its contributors.
In an April 2015 report for Yahoo News, reporter Alan Berlow described making several donations through a website branded with banners for the NRA-ILA, after which he received thank-you emails from the NRA-ILA. Mr. Berlow’s credit card statements, however, showed that his donations went to the NRA’s political action committee, the NRA-PVF. These solicitations appeared to violate federal election law. In response to Mr. Berlow’s report, the NRA blamed the misallocated donations on a “coding error” affecting roughly $125,000 worth of donations.
“The NRA appears to have deceived both the federal government and its own donors, in violation of federal laws and rules,” Bookbinder said. “It is supposed to be clear who donors are giving to and where their money is going.”
“The appropriate agencies need to subject the NRA’s finances to full scrutiny to determine whether the organization made a surprising series of separate, innocent mistakes, or simply isn’t bothering to follow the rules about disclosing its political activities,” Bookbinder continued.
Read the letter to the IRS and supporting exhibits.
Read the letter to the FEC and supporting exhibits.
Read the IRS’ response.
https://www.citizensforethics.org/press ... ularities/
One man wrote to Newsday to suggest that if the United States cracks down on gun ownership, it will be following in the footsteps of Adolf Hitler. He wrote, "Adolf Hitler said in 1933, 'to conquer a nation, one must first disarm its citizens.' “
This quote is easy to find on gun rights websites, but nowhere else. It struck me as the kind of thing people could keep repeating until they believed it was accurate.
So, I tried the Nexis archive to search newspaper and magazine articles. Nothing. Famous quotation websites produced many Hitler quotes, but not this one. A search of Google Books also turned up no matches.
It’s hard to prove a negative. Hitler may have said this. He may also have said he likes cornflakes for breakfast, but then we say a lot of things that aren’t recorded.
Washington (CNN) CNN commentator and former Pennsylvania GOP Sen. Rick Santorum on Sunday suggested students protesting for gun control legislation would be better served by taking CPR classes and preparing for active shooter scenarios.
"How about kids instead of looking to someone else to solve their problem, do something about maybe taking CPR classes or trying to deal with situations that when there is a violent shooter that you can actually respond to that," Santorum said on CNN's "State of the Union."
Santorum's comments came a day after protesters assembled at March for Our Lives events in Washington and across the country to demand gun control legislation in the wake of the deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida.
Santorum dismissed the usefulness of "phony gun laws" and appeared to call on students and others to improve their communities and to prepare to respond to further shootings instead of calling for new laws.
"They took action to ask someone to pass a law," Santorum said. "They didn't take action to say, 'How do I, as an individual, deal with this problem? How am I going to do something about stopping bullying within my own community? What am I going to do to actually help respond to a shooter?'... Those are the kind of things where you can take it internally, and say, 'Here's how I'm going to deal with this. Here's how I'm going to help the situation,' instead of going and protesting and saying, 'Oh, someone else needs to pass a law to protect me.'"
Van Jones, a liberal CNN commentator, interjected and mentioned his own child was about to start high school.
"I want him focused on algebra and other stuff," Jones said. "If his main way to survive high school is learning CPR so when his friends get shot ... that to me, we've gone too far. I'm proud of these kids. I know you're proud of these kids too."
Santorum responded by continuing to knock gun control efforts.
"I'm proud of them," he said. "But I think everyone should be responsible and deal with the problems that we have to confront in our lives. And ignoring those problems and saying they're not going to come to me and saying some phony gun law is gonna solve it. Phony gun laws don't solve these problems."
Santorum's comments prompted a statement from Everytown for Gun Safety program manager Erica Lafferty, whose mother was shot and killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.
The statement read: "Rick Santorum's words are an insult to the kids of Parkland, my family and to the countless others who have had loved ones taken by gun violence. My mother was killed while protecting her students at Sandy Hook School. For anyone to suggest that the solution to gun violence is for kids to learn CPR is outrageous, and indicative of the NRA's desire to do or say anything except strengthen America's weak gun laws."
82_28 » Sun Mar 25, 2018 2:09 pm wrote:One man wrote to Newsday to suggest that if the United States cracks down on gun ownership, it will be following in the footsteps of Adolf Hitler. He wrote, "Adolf Hitler said in 1933, 'to conquer a nation, one must first disarm its citizens.' “
Teacher accidentally fires gun in class while teaching about gun safety
GOP in crisis as more major donors pull money over guns
By Alison R. Parker - March 24, 201815894
Republicans' intransigence on gun violence is being tested as more big-money donors are joining Al Hoffman Jr. and putting away their checkbooks.
Even in the wake of tragedy upon tragedy, Republicans have governed under the thumb of the NRA. But more funders are joining mega-donor Al Hoffman Jr. to demand action on gun safety. Consequently, the GOP may finally realize the need to make a change.
Days after the mass shooting at a high school in Florida, Hoffman made his stance clear to the party.
“I will not write another check unless they all support a ban on assault weapons,” Hoffman wrote to GOP leaders. “Enough is enough!”
Hoffman isn’t just a donor; he previously served as the National Finance Chairman for the Republican National Committee.
And he warned that he would “email every single donor I know in the Republican Party and try to get them on board.” Two days later, he reiterated that mission. “There’s a movement coming,” Hoffman declared.
And he has made good on that declaration.
Hoffman officially launched his group, Americans for Gun Safety Now, on Saturday. Notably, it was the same day massive crowds turned out for March for Our Lives across the country.
The group has 21 supporters, including Republican congressmen Carlos Curbelo and Brian Mast and former Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair. The list also includes many other major donors like Hoffman.
These supporters have given hundreds of thousands of dollars to Republican candidates this election cycle. And Hoffman plans to use this influence to lobby party leaders like House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.
“The federal government better pass legislation … and get it done now, before November,” Hoffman told TIME Magazine. “If they don’t do this, my guess is that they will lose big in November.”
Because he isn’t letting inertia of some congressional Republicans stop him.
“We’re in deep limbo with a number of congressmen and Senators right now, but we’ve got to kick them in the butt and get it going on this,” Hoffman said. He added that he would “encourage [donors] not to give money to these candidates that will not endorse this plan.”
The massacre in Parkland was the 18th school shooting of the year at the time. And it’s the third-deadliest in modern U.S. history.
Yet even faced with those horrifying statistics, and the pleas of survivors, Republicans have largely remained unmoved.
Children begging for their lives ought to be enough for the GOP to join Americans in abandoning the NRA.
If Republicans are immune to such cries, perhaps rapidly emptying campaign bank accounts will ring loud and clear.
https://shareblue.com/gop-crisis-donors ... fman-guns/
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