National Rifle Association facing backlash as corporate giants drop links with gun lobby group

A wave of companies has ended their association with the National Rifle Association as the backlash against the gun lobby group spreads.

In the wake of the Parkland shooting, companies have come under pressure on social media to sever their ties with the NRA.

The NRA’s five million members have, until now, enjoyed a raft of favourable deals from the NRA’s corporate partners, including cut-price car hire.

However Hertz and Enterprise holdings – the parent company of major car rental firms Enterprise, Alamo and National – announced the end of their co-branding memberships.

First National Bank of Omaha, which offers the "Official Credit Card of the NRA" – with benefits including  five per cent cash back on petrol and sporting goods – announced it was ending the arrangement.

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Symantec, which offered anti-virus software, has stopped offering NRA members a discount which slashed the price of its top package from $110 to $48.

On Saturday, United Airlines and Delta Airlines both released statements that they would no longer offer discounts for NRA events and asked that the gun lobby remove references to them from their website.

Chubb Insurance has confirmed it will no longer underwrite "NRA Carry Guard" policies, although the company took the decision three months ago.

The sweeping corporate desertion of the NRA follows a social media campaign under the #BoycottNRA hashtag, which has named and shamed companies with ties to the gun lobby group.

Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, which was founded after the 2012 shootings in Sandy Hook, has sent letters to streaming television companies demanding they axe NRA TV from their line-ups.

Such is the groundswell of anger that a number of companies which severed their links with the NRA some time ago have publicly disowned the organisation on social media.

In the past the NRA has not been averse to orchestrating a boycott campaign of its own, notably in 2000, when it targeted Smith & Wesson, which had cut a deal with the Clinton administration.

The gun manufacturers were accused of "caving in" after agreeing a package of measures including restrictions on sales, the introduction of locking devices and limits on clip sizes.

Gun owners deserted Smith & Wesson, which suffered a 40 per cent slump in gun sales.

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