Federal Court Orders FEC To Take Action Against The NRA

The FEC has been ordered to take action on complaints made against the NRA within 30 days.

The FEC illegally delayed taking action on complaints against the NRA

The Campaign Legal Center said in a statement provided to PoliticusUSA:

Today, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia issued an order, instructing the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to take action within 30 days on long-pending administrative complaints against the National Rifle Association (NRA) for using shell corporations to coordinate campaign spending with federal candidates. The order follows a 2019 lawsuit filed by Campaign Legal Center Action (CLC Action) on behalf of Giffords.

Campaign finance law allows outside groups like the NRA to make unlimited expenditures supporting candidates — but only if that spending is completely independent of those candidates’ campaigns. During the 2014, 2016 and 2018 campaign cycles, the NRA showed flagrant disregard for these rules by using mutual vendors to coordinate expenditures with seven federal candidates, including former President Donald Trump. Through this scheme, the NRA was able to secretly contribute millions of dollars to candidates, in violation of the contribution limits, and without disclosing its support.

Giffords filed four complaints with the FEC to address the NRA’s violations. The FEC took no action. In April of 2019, CLC Action filed suit on behalf of Giffords against the FEC in federal court, on the grounds that the FEC had unlawfully delayed in acting on the administrative complaint.

FEC complaints have been filed against the NRA for years that involve everything from illegal donations to coordinating with campaigns. The NRA was used as an intermediary between Trump and Russia, and the gun lobby has been investigated for years for funneling illegal campaign donations to Trump and other Republican candidates.

Republicans on the FEC blocked the commission from calling the FBI to ask about the NRA laundering Russian money into the Trump campaign.

Republicans on the FEC have been blocking action against the NRA, but thanks to a federal court ruling, action will finally have to be taken.

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