In a new document, The National Rifle Association revised its previous statement about receiving one Russian donation to correct that number to more than 20 Russia linked contributions.
In a letter to Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) revealed Wednesday, the NRA said most of these payments were “routine” for membership or magazine subscriptions and the sum was just over $2,500.00.
The NRA said the contributions came from 23 people associated with Russian addresses.
Payments for what the NRA said were membership dues came from lifetime member Alexander Torshin, a Russian political figure who sat at a dinner table with Donald Trump Jr. at the 2016 National Rifle Association convention. Torshin was hit with the recent U.S. sanctions against Russian oligarchs in retaliation.
On March 1st, NPR revealed the depth of Torshin’s cultivation of his NRA ties:
A prominent Kremlin-linked Russian politician has methodically cultivated ties with leaders of the National Rifle Association and documented efforts in real time over six years to leverage those connections and gain deeper access into American politics, NPR has learned.
Russian politician Alexander Torshin said his ties to the NRA provided him access to Donald Trump — and the opportunity to serve as a foreign election observer in the United States during the 2012 election.
The NRA is already under FBI investigation for potentially laundering Russian money for the Trump campaign. The organization has responded to the investigation by attacking the FBI, but the one thing that had been missing from the NRA was a firm denial that they take money from Russians. We now know, thanks to Sen. Ron Wyden, that the NRA flag waving gun lobby does take cash from Putin’s Russia.
Why would Russians be joining a group that supposedly is dedicated to protecting the Second Amendment in the United States? The answer is that the NRA has been engaging in un-American behavior for decades because for the gun lobby it is sell more guns first, country last.