- Oct 22, 2020
- Reaction score
- Political Leaning
- Slightly Conservative
Judge blocks New York attorney general's attempt to dissolve NRA but allows suit to proceed | CNN Politics
In a legal win for the National Rifle Association, a New York State Supreme Court justice has blocked the state attorney general's attempt to dissolve the organization but has allowed her suit against it to move forward.
The judge in the New York law suit against the NRA has dismissed New York state Attorney General Laticia James' politically motivated motion to dissolve the NRA, while allowing the case against the individual defendants to proceed.
The Attorney General’s claims to dissolve the NRA are dismissed. Her allegations concern primarily private harm to the NRA and its members and donors, which if proven can be addressed by the targeted, less intrusive relief she seeks through other claims in her Complaint. The Complaint does not allege that any financial misconduct benefited the NRA, or that the NRA exists primarily to carry out such activity, or that the NRA is incapable of continuing its legitimate activities on behalf of its millions of members. In short, the Complaint does not allege the type of public harm that is the legal linchpin for imposing the “corporate death penalty.” Moreover, dissolving the NRA could impinge, at least indirectly, on the free speech and assembly rights of its millions of members. While that alone would not preclude statutory dissolution if circumstances otherwise clearly warranted it, the Court believes it is a relevant factor that counsels against State-imposed dissolution, which should be the last option, not the first.
While the charges against the individual defendants may have merit, the attempt to dissolve the entire organization was an egregious example of abuse of power.
But dissolution? We have been vehement critics of the NRA — of its dangerous stances against any sensible gun-safety measures and its heavy-handed tactics — and we would not mourn its demise. But other nonprofits that have had corrupt leadership were given the chance to clean house and institute reforms. A 148-year-old organization with, it claims, 5 million members would seem to merit a similar second chance.
It should go without saying that it would be entirely improper for a state official — or a federal official, for that matter — to use the awesome enforcement power of the government to target advocacy organizations with whose policies the official strongly disagrees.