Rounds

News and notes on guns in America

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Chris Cox, executive director of the NRA's lobbying arm, speaks at the group's annual meeting in 2016.

Daily Bulletin: New Audio Suggests the NRA Could Be Involved In Illegal Campaign Coordination

Happy Friday, Bulletin readers. The National Rifle Association’s star lawyer has been kicked off a case for a misleading claim unearthed by The Trace. The White House will reportedly oppose age restrictions for firearm sales. And parents sue an Ohio school district to stop it from allowing teachers to carry firearms.

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WHAT TO KNOW TODAY

After The Trace reported his false claim, an NRA lawyer is booted from a case. Last month, Alex Yablon reported that William A. Brewer III, who is representing the gun group in its suit against the insurance broker Lockton, failed to disclose an ethical violation in Texas. Shortly after, a judge ordered Brewer to explain the misrepresentation. Yesterday, the same judge removed Brewer from the case. Read on for the full story.

Meanwhile, a new recording suggests the NRA could be involved in illegal campaign coordination. In audio obtained by The Daily Beast, Matt Rosendale, a Republican Senate candidate in Montana, says the NRA’s top lobbyist assured him that the gun group would spend heavily to unseat his Democratic opponent. Campaign finance watchdogs say the comments suggest impermissible coordination. Follow the money: On Monday, The Trace reported that the NRA has paid the election contractor Starboard Strategic almost $400,000 against Rosendale’s opponent. Starboard bears no meaningful distinction from an established campaign firm called OnMessage, Inc. Federal Election Commission data shows that Rosendale’s campaign has paid OnMessage more than $400,000 this cycle.

The White House School Safety Commission will oppose age limits for gun purchases. The Washington Post reports that the commission, formed in the wake of the Parkland shooting, has concluded that there’s no evidence that age restrictions can help prevent school shootings. Instead, its upcoming report will recommend safety trainings for gun owners. From the Trace archives: The 19-year-old Parkland gunman was too young to purchase a handgun. But no law prevented him from buying the AR-15 he used to kill 17 people.

A group of parents is suing an Ohio school district over its plan to arm teachers. In April, the Madison Board of Education passed a resolution allowing armed staff in district schools. On Wednesday, five parents filed a lawsuit against the board and superintendent, alleging that the resolution does not meet the firearms training requirements mandated by Ohio law.

Police in Chicago will be required to report when they point a gun at someone. The new rule is part of a consent decree to reform the Chicago Police Department finalized on Thursday. Officers must file paperwork each time they point a weapon at a suspect, even if they don’t fire.

Los Angeles County rolls out increased penalties for gun-related crimes. Law enforcement officials announced Thursday that anyone who is convicted of illegally possessing a gun or using one in a crime will serve a maximum sentence. “Doing time for your crime is a critically important message, as the debate over gun violence is waged across our nation,” Sheriff Jim McDonnell said during a press conferenceWhat experts say: The evidence that mandatory minimums directly reduce gun crime is thin and some experts question how much greater public safety can be clearly attributed to such laws.

ONE LAST THING

Murder-suicides claimed at least 20 lives this week. Murder-suicide by gun is an everyday occurrence in America. According to an analysis by The Trace earlier this year, the shooters are almost always male, and the vast majority of cases involve current or former romantic partners. Among this week’s victims: