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YETI calls NRA statement 'inaccurate' after NRA claims YETI cut ties

Controversy began with Friday email

NRA logo, Credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
NRA logo, Credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Outdoor products manufacturer YETI says claims by the National Rifle Association that it stopped doing business with the organization are "inaccurate."

YETI contacted our sister station KSAT with the following statement after the station reported that an email to NRA members was published on the website of the NRA-ILA, the lobbying arm of the NRA:

“A few weeks ago, YETI® notified the NRA Foundation, as well as a number of other organizations, that we were eliminating a group of outdated discounting programs.  When we notified the NRA Foundation and the other organizations of this change, YETI explained that we were offering them an alternative customization program broadly available to consumers and organizations, including the NRA Foundation. These facts directly contradict the inaccurate statement the NRA-ILA distributed on April 20.

Further, the NRA-ILA stated in that same public communication that “[YETI has] declined to continue helping America’s young people enjoy outdoor recreational activities.”  Nothing is further from the truth.  YETI was founded more than 10 years ago with a passion for the outdoors, and over the course of our history we have actively and enthusiastically supported hunters, anglers and the broader outdoor community. We have been devoted to and will continue to directly support causes tied to our passion for the outdoors, including by working with many organizations that promote conservation and management of wildlife resources and habitat restoration. From our website to our film footage and from our social media posts to our ambassadors, YETI has always prominently featured hunters pursuing their passions.  Moreover, YETI is unwavering in our belief in and commitment to the Constitution of the United States and its Second Amendment.”

The NRA email states that in the past, Yeti coolers and other products were used at Friends of NRA Foundation banquet and auction events around the country. 

"Suddenly, without prior notice, YETI has declined to do business with The NRA Foundation saying they no longer wish to be an NRA vendor, and refused to say why," the email stated.

"They will only say they will no longer sell products to The NRA Foundation.  That certainly isn't sportsmanlike. In fact, YETI should be ashamed."

The following companies are among those that have ended member benefits with the NRA this year:

First National Bank of Omaha
Enterprise Rent-A-Car
Alamo Rent a Car
National Car Rental
Symantec
Hertz
MetLife
SimpliSafe
Avis
Budget Rent a Car
Allied
North American Moving
TrueCar
Delta Airlines
United Airlines
Paramount RX
Starkey
Yeti

However, it's been reported that in the days and weeks after the February 14 shooting, the NRA saw a significant spike in donations.