Skip to Main Content

The Reload: NRA Drops to 4.3 Million Members since Corruption Scandal

New reporting from The Reload shows decline in prominent and influential gun lobby organization’s membership.

Washington DC — Last night, The Reload reported that the NRA has lost one million members since its 2019 corruption scandal, dropping its total membership to only 4.3 million members. At its height in 2018, the NRA had 5.5 million members, which has sharply declined following the allegations of corruption and financial impropriety made against CEO and Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre and other members in NRA leadership. The report shows how the NRA, which is now smaller than it has been since 2012, is continuing to lose influence. 

The decline in membership was confirmed by a November 2022 financial memo, which informed a presentation conducted in January this year by LaPierre to NRA board members, both obtained by The Reload. Both documents show that the organization’s revenues went down by nearly $24 million (11%) from 2021 to 2022, while expenses grew by more than $11.5 million (5.5%) due to losing $37.4 million in membership dues. At the same time as this loss in membership, the NRA experienced a 47.4% increase in legal expenses, putting the once cash-rich organization in the red. 

Peter Ambler, Executive Director and Co-Founder, Giffords:
“A lot has changed for the better in the last 10 years. Since the gun violence prevention movement organized in the wake of the tragic mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, the once powerful gun lobby has lost its influence both in DC and in communities across the country. Responsible gun owners are no longer aligned with the NRA, and many of them have found a home with Giffords’s Gun Owners for Safety, a broad coalition of responsible gun owners who are calling for commonsense solutions. Moreover, politicians in competitive districts who once feared blowback from the gun lobby are now making gun safety central to their campaigns, and gun safety candidates are winning. The progress we’ve made is reflected in the lifesaving Bipartisan Safer Communities Act and the over 525 state gun safety laws passed in the last decade. Yet, we know there is far more work to be done. Just in the past two months, the US has experienced 64 mass shootings. With our broad coalition, the gun safety movement is now stronger than ever, and we will not stop working until we end the gun violence epidemic in this country.”

Jon Gold, Senior Ambassador, Michigan Chapter – Gun Owners for Safety:
“For decades now, the NRA has built, and is building, an alarmist radical culture of terror and falsehoods, pushing harmful rhetoric that has contributed to the gun violence epidemic that plagues our country. I am proud that other gun owners are realizing that the NRA isn’t representing responsible gun owner’s interests and shows no signs of ever doing so. Giffords Gun Owners for Safety is here for gun owners, who like me, value Second Amendment rights and are actively supporting responsible policy solutions to combat gun violence.”


Our experts can speak to the full spectrum of gun violence prevention issues. Have a question? Email us at