Colorado Gun Nuts Mourn Loss of NRATV

Local pro-gun activist Laura Carno on NRATV.

As the New York Times reports, production of new programming at the controversial NRATV outlet operated by the National Rifle Association is ending and the channel will go dark, following a decision by the organization’s leadership after a spate of infighting between the storied gun-rights organization and its unruly media arm:

“Many members expressed concern about the messaging on NRATV becoming too far removed from our core mission: defending the Second Amendment,” Wayne LaPierre, the N.R.A.’s longtime chief executive, wrote in a message to members that was expected to be sent out by Wednesday. “So, after careful consideration, I am announcing that starting today, we are undergoing a significant change in our communications strategy. We are no longer airing ‘live TV’ programming.”

…N.R.A. officials had grown leery of the cost of creating so much live content for NRATV, which was started in 2016, and wondered whether it was worth the return on its investment. The site’s web traffic was minuscule, with 49,000 unique visitors in January, according to a report provided by Comscore.

Some N.R.A. board members and officials were also unnerved by the breadth of its content, which strayed far beyond gun rights and encompassed several right-wing talking points, including criticism of immigration and broadsides against the F.B.I. A show hosted by Ms. [Dana] Loesch that put Ku Klux Klan hoods on talking trains from the popular children’s program “Thomas & Friends” drew outrage from some within the organization.

Although we had no idea that the reach of NRATV was so small, the sudden end of NRATV is nonetheless significant to Colorado politics. Since its founding in 2016, NRATV has heavily featured Colorado pro-gun activists like Laura Carno of Colorado Springs in their programming. This year, NRATV has already devoted generous airtime to the battle in the Colorado legislature over the state’s new “red flag” law to allow for the temporary removal of firearms from persons ruled by a judge to be a danger to themselves or others. NRATV didn’t exist in 2013 when the gun lobby organized recalls against Democrats over the passage of gun safety bills that year, but the outlet would have doubtless played a big role in publicizing the “backlash” against Democrats in 2019 over red flag despite the law’s overwhelming popularity.

Except now, due to a power struggle at the top of the organization’s leadership and a recognition that NRATV has strayed from its core mission into multi-issue right-wing advocacy that divided rank-and-file gun owners, that’s not going to happen. Carno and friends will have to find legitimate media outlets to pitch their stories. And we don’t expect that will be nearly as accommodating as in-house paid media.

One might even say that the NRA…overreached.

13 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Davie says:

    Nothing like money, greed and blood relations to stir up a good fight.  May they all rot in Hell

    But the dispute between the N.R.A. and Ackerman goes deeper than NRATV. It has its origins in threats by Ms. James last summer to investigate the N.R.A.’s tax-exempt status. The N.R.A. began an audit of its contractors, and has said that Ackerman, which was paid roughly $40 million annually by the N.R.A., refused to comply. Ackerman has disputed that allegation.

    Ackerman has assailed the role of the N.R.A.’s outside attorney, William A. Brewer III, over the size of his legal fees, and has seen him as its chief antagonist. The contention has a bitter family twist because Mr. Brewer is the brother-in-law of Mr. McQueen, Ackerman’s chief executive.

  2. Genghis says:

    The related savings will allow the NRA to fulfill its true mission, namely keeping Wayne LaPierre supplied with Faberge eggs, the hoity-toitiest of puff pastries, and the finest haberdashery.

  3. mamajama55 says:

    “Money, greed, and blood relations”…sounds like our gunzo gang of Nevilles and Brown here in Colorado.

    Negev will have a sad to see NRATV go… but I’m sure he’ll be along here soon to ‘splaining why losing the ability to watch NRA TV is just like losing the ability to use contraception.

  4. Meiner49er says:

    Hmmm, start an outrageous programming operation that's sure to collapse at some point, channel lots of gullible donor money into it while it lasts, and then when it collapses, start billing outrageous fees from the slush fund for damage control? Sounds straight outta the Trump playbook to me.

  5. 2Jung2Die says:

    Too bad, I was hoping to watch the NRATV Democrat Party presidential debate with Dana moderating!

  6. unnamed says:

    Maybe Swamp creature Lamebrain can have PBS funds redirected to NRA TV.

  7. bullshit! says:

    Who will the gun nuts jerk off to now that Dana Loesch is off the air?

  8. Davie says:

    And the laughs just keep coming.  The NRA sat on a live grenade and lost another asshole:

    The National Rifle Association’s top lobbyist has resigned in another sign of infighting within the powerful gun lobbying group.

    Chris Cox’s departure comes just days after the NRA placed him on administrative leave, claiming he was part of a failed attempt to extort the longtime CEO.

    Cox was long viewed as the likely successor to CEO Wayne LaPierre, who’s been at the helm for decades. His resignation was confirmed by NRA spokesman Andrew Arulanandam. No other comment was immediately made about his departure.

    Cox had been the executive director of NRA’s lobbying arm, the Institute for Legislative Action, since 2002.

    His departure comes amid some head-spinning turmoil within the NRA that has embroiled its longtime public relations firm, its former president and NRATV, the online TV station.

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