Over a dozen attorneys general this week filed a motion in opposition to the ongoing attempt by the New York Attorney General’s office to dissolve the National Rifle Association, claiming that that office is engaging in a politically motivated attempt to squelch the storied civil rights group.
Prosecutors in states ranging from Alaska to Idaho to Ohio to Oklahoma said in a brief filed this week that New York Attorney General Letitia James is working to “silence one of the country’s most powerful voices in defense of the constitutional right to keep and bear arms.”
James is seeking to dissolve the NRA over allegations of financial malfeasance from its leadership. The NRA has filed chapter 11 bankruptcy and is seeking to reincorporate in Texas; as part of court hearings starting next week, the NRA may either have the bankruptcy request dismissed or else be subject to court-mandated independent investigation.
The attorneys general in their brief argue that New York’s lawsuit is “retaliation for political speech” rather than genuine public oversight, and that the NRA should be allowed to pursue its reconstitution in Texas in part to get away from the allegedly unfair practices in New York.
“Allowing the NRA to proceed with this reorganization case,” they write, “will benefit not just the Association itself but also its members, whose individual constitutional rights are threatened by New York’s actions.”