Last year, Wayne LaPierre led the charge to kill the world's first Arms Trade Treaty, but this time the NRA may be spread too thin
The National Rifle Association is so tied up fighting new gun restrictions in the wake of the Newtown shooting that it has failed so far to mount its expected lobbying blitz against a new international arms control control treaty.
With just a few weeks to go until the world's first Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) is put to a final vote at a UN conference in New York campaigners have voiced surprise at the NRA's relative silence on the issue. Until the Newtown tragedy, in which 20 young children died in their classrooms on 14 December, the UN's attempt to contain the loosely regulated international trade in weapons had been one of the gun lobby's biggest targets.
Wayne LaPierre, the NRA's executive vice president, personally addressed the previous ATT conference last July, telling the meeting that "no foreign influence has jurisdiction over the freedoms our Founding Fathers guaranteed to us". When the negotiations broke down – in no small measure because of US resistance to the global regulations on weapons sales – the NRA gloated that this was "a big victory for American gun owners, and the NRA is being widely credited for killing the UN ATT".