The National Rifle Association (NRA) filed a lawsuit against the state of New York and Governor Andrew Cuomo earlier this year claiming that Cuomo's public relations campaign against the NRA has driven them toward bankruptcy.
Reports about the NRA's demise were met with a reasonable amount of skepticism because the NRA was still spending lots of money, but Open Secrets recently published records that showed the NRA is putting it all on their credit card. The NRA's revenue has plummeted and they're running a deficit to fund their operations.
The Trace now reports that the NRA's Murder Insurance program, known as "Carry Guard," is at the center of the association's financial problems.
Based on their reporting, it also appears that the NRA official who created the Murder Insurance program is a fraudster. Sources who spoke to The Trace about the official, Joshua Powell, say his program is killing the group, but a followup investigation found that the NRA probably shouldn't have ever trusted him with anything.
“Carry Guard is Josh’s baby,” a source close to the NRA told The Trace. “It was his brainchild, billed by Josh as an integral part of securing the NRA’s finances well into the future. But it’s a huge fucking mess.” [...]
A Trace investigation into Powell’s business record, including a review of thousands of pages of legal documents and interviews with a dozen former associates, has uncovered a long history of mismanagement and financial irresponsibility. Prior to joining the gun group, Powell and his business ventures left a trail of defaulted debts, seized bank accounts, and jilted partners from Ireland to Montana, sparking more than 20 lawsuits for more than $400,000 from carpenters, modeling agencies, boutique gun-makers, and dozens of other vendors. (Of those, one is ongoing and one was dismissed; the rest ended either in a default judgment in favor of the creditors or an out-of-court settlement). Once, a lawyer he’d hired to represent him in a lawsuit over nonpayment sued him for nonpayment. [...]
To those who knew Powell from his former career, his travails at the NRA are unsurprising. What stunned them was that he was hired by the NRA at all. “When we heard he got the job,” said Cheryl Klonoski, who worked for Powell for several years as a retail manager, “we were all like, ‘Wow, didn’t anyone fucking vet this guy?’”
The Trace report goes into much further detail but suffice to say virtually everything Joshua Powell has ever touched in his life has turned to shit. Actually, you could swap his name for Trump's in this report and you'd be none the wiser if no one told you.
Maybe that makes him the perfect man for the job at this particular moment. The NRA got more than they bargained for when they conspired with Russian oligarchs to help Trump get elected. Their own Trump-lite character is running the organization into the ground.
I expect we'll see Powell resign in the near future.