Nation Rifle Association Supports Conservation Opponents, Always
9/16/08, press release from American Hunters and Shooters Association
By Allen Madison
Why Does the National Rifle Association Leadership Support Congress's Biggest Conservation Opponents?
As the self-proclaimed "largest pro-hunting organization in the world," the National Rifle Association has long claimed to represent America's hunters and shooters in the fight to protect one of America's oldest traditions. The NRA's bylaws include an article setting a core goal "to promote and defend hunting as a viable and necessary method of fostering the propagation, growth and conservation of our renewable wildlife resources."
But it turns out that its by-laws are just empty rhetoric.
A report released today by the American Hunters and Shooters Association (which I founded in 2006) reveals an ugly truth: the NRA's leadership is spending its Members' money to support the campaigns of the biggest conservation opponents in Congress. Contrary to its stated goals and assurances to the hunting community, our unprecedented analysis shows that NRA's leadership overwhelming supports Members of Congress with the worst conservation voting records.
For example, 144 House Members supported the Roadless Conservation Act of 2007, which seeks to limit road construction and corporate development in our National Forests. Those 144 members received and average grade of D minus from the NRA. Alternatively, the 291 House Members on the other side of the issue averaged B pluses and seven times as much campaign money from NRA.
Did the NRA's leaders even take a position on the Roadless Conservation Act of 2007? No. They are flat-out ignoring conservation issues.
Given this, it's not surprising that since 2000, the NRA's leaders have contributed $4,085,277 in campaign money to support the 193 Members of Congress who received poor ratings from the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) and only $390,897 more than 10 times less to the 245 Members of Congress who have received high ratings from LCV.
The NRA's campaign contributions, endorsements and ratings of Members of Congress expose the organization's strong anti-conservation bias. Despite their lofty bylaws and forest friendly taglines, the NRA is standing by silently as its allies in Congress are helping to destroy America's wilderness.
Hunting is an American tradition that depends on conserving America's wilderness and wildlife. To fully enjoy our rights and heritage, hunters and shooters deserve leadership that will protect our guns and our land. America's hunters are beginning to ask whether anyone in Washington recognizes that.
The American Hunters and Shooters Association, unlike the NRA, is dedicated both to protecting the gun rights of Americans and preserving America's hunting heritage through conservation and responsible wildlife management. We understand the crucial relationship between protecting our rights as gun owners and protecting the lands we love.
So, for the three million NRA Members who are tired of seeing their $25 dollar contributions wasted by an NRA leadership supporting anti-conservation Members of Congress and Wayne LaPierre's $900,000 salary, we offer a different choice.
And, for 77 million gun-owning Americans who are not Members of NRA, we invite you to join an organization that is steadfast in protecting our Second Amendment rights, conserving our environment, and will support common sense efforts to keep guns away from criminals.
America's hunters and shooters should no longer stand by the NRA because it's clear the NRA has long stopped standing up for them. And by the way, my salary is a dollar a year.
The American Hunters and Shooters Association, unlike
the NRA, is dedicated both to protecting the gun rights of Americans
and preserving Americas hunting heritage through conservation
and responsible wildlife management. We understand the crucial relationship
between protecting our rights as gun owners and protecting the lands
we love. Our website is at http://www.huntersandshooters.com.