NRA v Brady Center Budget
Let me begin with a disclosure. In the early 1990s I donated money to the Center to Prevent Handgun Violence, which is now the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence and an affiliate, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. My contributions were under $50 and I was proud to be a card-carrying member of the organization because I strongly favor gun and ammo control.
In the aftermath of the massacre at the movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, I want to shine a light on the most recent IRS 990 filings for both Brady nonprofits and the three National Rifle Association nonprofits. This info helps explain why America's bloody violence and death toll from guns is outrageously high.
First, the 2010 tax filings for the Brady nonprofits report these amounts for revenue:
Brady Center: $3.0
Brady Campaign: $2.8 million
Total: $5.8 million
Next, here are the revenue figures for the NRA and its two affiliates in 2010:
National Rifle Association: $227.8 million
NRA Foundation: $23.3 million
NRA Freedom Action: $1.8 million
Total: $252.9 million
Pardon the expression, but the Brady groups with their puny $5.8 budget are woefully outgunned by the massive $225.9 revenue of the NRA groups. Seeing these numbers explains why so many politicians are slaves to the gun lobby and fear proposing or enacting sensible gun control laws.
Over at OpenSecrets.org, the chart for the Brady Center's PAC over all spending from 1990 through 2012 shows only one year where they spent more than $1 million:
The chart for their spending reveals they've never given more than $350,000 in any election cycle, and the bulk of the money went to Democrats:
The NRA PAC made most of its donations to Republicans, and in many years the total donated was at or above $900,000:
Blood and carnage have not been strong enough factors to motivate politicians to stand up to the NRA bullies, and until serious money is raised and spent to match the NRA I don't expect anything to change to curb gun violence. It pains me to say that the deaths and harms in Aurora, Colorado, won't do much to loosen the grip of the gun lobby on our political system.