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NRA Lawsuit Against NY Insurance Regulator Tossed By Appeals Court

A federal appeals court rejected a National Rifle Association lawsuit accusing a New York regulator of pressuring banks and insurers to stop doing business with the gun rights group, reports Reuters. The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the NRA failed to prove that Maria Vullo, former superintendent of New York's Department of Financial Services, "crossed the line between attempts to convince and attempts to coerce." Vullo had called on banks and insurers to consider the "reputational risks" of doing business with gun rights groups in April 2018 after the mass high school shooting in Parkland, Fl She had fined three insurance businesses more than $13 million, and they agreed to stop selling NRA-endorsed products that New York considered illegal.

The NRA sued Vullo, her agency, and then-Governor Andrew Cuomo, saying the state deprived it of basic financial services and threatened its advocacy. Circuit Judge Denny Chin wrote that even though Vullo's actions were somewhat coercive, she acted reasonably given the backlash against the gun rights group after the Parkland shooting. The NRA's lawyer, William Brewer, said the group may appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, because he said the decision violates the First Amendment.


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