The National Rifle Association has paid off the second largest campaign finance fine in the history of Rhode Island, The Providence Journal reported on Friday.
The pro-gun group paid the $63,000 fine on Jan. 27, a few days after reaching a settlement with the state’s Board of Elections. The settlement came in response to a complaint filed last year by a group called The Rhode Island Progressive Democrats, which argued that at least as far back as 2002 the NRA had failed to disclose donors to its state-based political action committee (PAC).
According to the Journal, the state’s Board of Elections ultimately found that the NRA’s state PAC had violated state law by not creating a separate bank account for funds it had received from the NRA’s federal PAC.
The Rhode Island Progressive Democrats told the newspaper it will now look at whether the NRA may have broken similar laws in other states.
“We’re still in the early stages of exploring this, but we do suspect that there may more going on,” Sam Bell, the group’s coordinator, said. “[W]e hope to put together a complete picture of the money trail, which should make us better prepared to put a stop to the similar illegal behavior which we believe may be going on in other states. … Ultimately, the goal is to make the NRA play by the same rules as gun safety advocates. Maybe then, we will be able to win some common-sense reforms and put a stop to the endless body count that plagues communities all across America.”