Here’s what we know about the 2022 annual meeting.
Where is the meeting?
The leadership forum will be held in Houston’s George R. Brown Convention Center, the same location it was going to be at last September for the 2021 annual meeting.
Who can attend the meeting?
Who are this year’s speakers?
Friday’s meeting will feature remarks from eight people, including NRA head Wayne LaPierre and Jason Ouimet, the executive director of the group’s lobbying arm, according to the event website.
NRA members were also expecting to hear from Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, but the Republican canceled his in-person appearance to instead attend a news conference in Uvalde, with his spokesperson telling the Dallas Morning News Thursday evening that the governor will address the convention “through prerecorded video.”
Sen. Ted Cruz and Rep. Dan Crenshaw, both Republicans of Texas, were also scheduled to speak at Friday’s meeting. South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem and North Carolina Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson, both Republicans, will also deliver remarks.
“I just did not believe it was the right thing to do,” Gatlin told CNN’s Pam Brown on Thursday. “It would have been kind of a classy move on the NRA’s part, and they need some good PR right now, if they’d cancel the whole thing and said, ‘Hey, we’re going to go in here for one big moment and say a prayer for those folks or have a moment of silence, and we’ll come back and do this later. We can always have our big convention.'”
He emphasized that he still supports the NRA and believes in the Second Amendment, but that he “didn’t think it was a good time to go down to Houston and have a party.”
What are the security measures?
The NRA said that because Trump will be at the event, the US Secret Service “will take control of the General Assembly Hall and have magnetometers in place before entry.”
What has happened since the 2019 meeting?
The NRA condemned the shooting in a statement Wednesday, calling it a “horrific and evil crime.”
“Although an investigation is underway and facts are still emerging, we recognize this was the act of a lone, deranged criminal,” the group said. “As we gather in Houston, we will reflect on these events, pray for the victims, recognize our patriotic members, and pledge to redouble our commitment to making our schools secure.”
The massacre is the deadliest shooting at a school since the Sandy Hook massacre in Connecticut in 2012 that left 26 people dead, including 20 children aged between 6 and 7 years old.
What happened at the last annual meeting?
The meeting was also notable because then-NRA President Oliver North told members during it that he would not be renominated president of the group following a dispute with LaPierre. The announcement was made in a letter in which North said he hoped he would be renominated for a second term but, “I am now informed that will not happen.”
Already a controversial figure due to his involvement in the Iran-Contra scandal, North joined the NRA at a critical juncture for it as it responded to renewed calls for gun control in the wake of the 2017 school shooting in Parkland, Florida.
This story has been updated with additional information Thursday.
CNN’s Ariane de Vogue, Sonia Moghe, Jeremy Diamond, Maegan Vazquez, Paul LeBlanc and Nikki Carvajal contributed to this report.