Former GA congressman Bob Barr named as part of new leadership at the NRA

ATLANTA — Former Georgia congressman Bob Barr has been named the new president of the National Rifle Association.

In a news release, the NRA said it has also named Doug Hamlin as NRA Executive Vice President & CEO.

“I have been a fighter my whole life and I commit to boldly fight for our Second Amendment rights on behalf of the millions of NRA members,” Barr said in a statement. “We need to grow our ranks, especially in this election year, and I pledge to focus my attention on doing just that.”

The moves come after the NRA had its image sullied by former leader Wayne LaPierre’s spending excesses.

LaPierre was found liable in February at a civil trial in New York of wrongly using millions of dollars of the organization’s money to pay for an extravagant lifestyle that included exotic getaways and trips on private planes and superyachts. LaPierre resigned as executive vice president and CEO on the eve of the trial.

The jury ordered LaPierre to repay almost $4.4 million to the NRA, while the organization’s retired finance chief, Wilson Phillips, owed $2 million. The lobbying group failed to properly manage its assets, omitted or misrepresented information in its tax filings and violated whistleblower protections under New York law, jurors found.


After reporting a $36 million deficit in 2018 fueled largely by misspending, the NRA cut back on longstanding programs that had been core to its mission, including training and education, recreational shooting, and law enforcement initiatives.

LaPierre’s trial cast a spotlight on the leadership, culture and finances of the over 150-year-old organization that has become a powerful influence on federal law and presidential elections.

John Feinblatt, the president of Everytown for Gun Safety, a nonprofit that advocates for stricter gun control, in a statement called Hamlin “a longtime insider,” adding that “the NRA’s chaotic infighting and financial doom spiral shows no signs of stopping.”

Barr represented Georgia’s 7th District from 1995-2003. While in Congress, Barr served as a senior member of the Judiciary Committee, as vice-chairman of the Government Reform Committee, and as a member of the Committee on Financial Services and the Committee on Veteran’s Affairs.

During his tenure, Barr was considered one of the most conservative members of Congress. He is a staunch proponent of gun rights and is opposed to any and all efforts to restrict the ownership of guns.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.


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