The pro-gun group filed a lawsuit in New York, claiming that the financial agency and the city's governor discouraged companies from doing business with it
06 Agosto 2018 13:35
The US National Rifle Association (NRA) has made bold claims that it has suffered ‘tens of millions of dollars’ of harm because insurance companies and banks cut ties with the group after the Parkland high school shooting earlier this year. However, NRA critics believe the announcement is another sly way of getting money through donations.
The guns rights organisation, which has found itself on the frontline of a wide public debate about the availability of guns in America, cited its alleged financial woes in documents filed in a New York federal court in late July, first reported by Rolling Stone.
According to the documents, the NRA is suing the New York State Department of Financial Services and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo after the agency discouraged financial services companies in New York from doing business with the gun rights organisation after the Florida shooting, in which 17 people were slain.
Buzzfeed News reports that the NRA argues in the lawsuit that it has become the victim of a ‘discrimination campaign’ that has caused harm to its reputation and marketing damages worth tens of millions of dollars.
‘The NRA has suffered tens of millions of dollars in damages,’ the lawsuit read. ‘Such damages include, without limitation, damages due to reputational harm, increased development and marketing costs for any potential new NRA-endorsed insurance programs, and lost royalty amounts owed to the NRA, as well as attorneys’ fees, legal expenses, and other costs.’
For fierce defenders of the Second Amendment of the US constitution, which protects citizens’ rights to carry a weapon, the NRA has been instrumental. The group now also claims that if it cannot use banking services and receive donations from members, it ‘will be unable to exist as a not-for-profit.’
‘Simply put, defendants made it clear to banks and insurers that it is bad business in New York to do business with the NRA,’ the NRA wrote in the lawsuit.
In April, the New York State Department of Financial Services issued a memo calling on insurers, banks, and other financial companies to ‘review’ their relationships with the NRA and other pro-gun groups.
David Hogg, a Parkland teens who became the face of the anti–gun violence movement March for Our Lives, tweeted on Saturday that the NRA is not in financial crisis but is ‘trying to fool us into believing this’ because it wants donations.
Cuomo piled on as well, saying on Saturday that an insurance product offered by the NRA in acts of self-defence shootings, called Carry Guard’, is illegal in the state of New York.
‘We put the insurance carrier on notice, they stopped that insurance product, and the NRA is not getting a commission from the sale of an illegal product. You know, what do you want me to say? My heart bleeds for them’ Cuomo said during a press stop in the Bronx.
‘You're not supposed to be selling an illegal product in the first place. Don't complain when you get caught with an illegal product.’
The state of New York filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit on Friday, and the governor called on other states to also ban the insurance program the NRA sells. ‘If the NRA goes bankrupt because of the State of New York, they'll be in my thoughts and prayers. I'll see you in court,’ said Cuomo in a statement.