Gun safety group files suit alleging NRA coordinated with Hawley, Rosendale campaigns

Gun safety group files suit alleging NRA coordinated with Hawley, Rosendale campaigns

A lawsuit alleges NRA affiliates made illegal campaign contributions in 2018 to campaigns of Republican lawmakers. (Photo by Getty Images) The Giffords gun safety organization has sued the National Rifle Association and the campaigns of U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley and U.S. Rep. Matt Rosendale, alleging the gun rights group used shell corporations to improperly aid the Republican lawmakers in 2018. Two NRA affiliates made up to $35 million in illegal campaign contributions — in the form of coordinated communications efforts — to the GOP Senate campaigns of Hawley, Rosendale, Thom Tillis of North Carolina, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Cory Gardner of Colorado and Tom Cotton of Arkansas, as well as Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, according to the suit , filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on Tuesday. The NRA Political Victory Fund, a political action committee, and the NRA Institute for Legislative Action spent millions on supposedly independent political advertising for the six Senate candidates and Trump in the 2014, 2016 and 2018 federal election cycles, according to the suit. The Campaign Legal Center, a nonpartisan campaign finance group, is representing Giffords, a gun-safety group founded by former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., in part to counter the NRA’s influence in national politics. Under a 2010 U.S. Supreme Court decision, outside groups are allowed to spend unlimited amounts on political speech, including advertisements in favor of candidates. But federal campaign finance rules require such advertisements to be commissioned without coordinating with campaigns. Coordinated messaging […]

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