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MoveOn.org Lies about AWB

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Waitone, Sep 16, 2004.

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  1. Waitone

    Waitone Member

    Dec 25, 2002
    The Land of Broccoli and Fingernails

    A False Ad About Assault Weapons

    A new Moveon PAC ad implies machine-guns are becoming legal, which isn't true. And it blames Bush, even though Bush said he would have extended the ban on assault weapons.

    September 14, 2004


    This latest ad from Moveon PAC is about as misleading as it can be. Through words, graphics and sound effects, it invites viewers to think that the expiration of the ban on 19 semiautomatic assault weapons will allow people legally to buy fully automatic machine guns that can fire "up to 300 rounds per minute." That's false.

    It has been illegal to buy a machine gun without federal clearance since 1934, and remains so.

    The ad also claims that Bush "will let the assault weapon ban expire," which is misleading. In fact, Bush spoke in support of the ban during his campaign four years ago and his spokesman said as recently as May of last year that he still supported it. It was Congress that failed to consider extending the ban and didn't present Bush with a bill to sign.


    This ad shows an AK47 assault rifle on screen. The announcer says "it can fire up to 300 rounds per minute" and "in the hands of terrorists, it could kill hundreds." A rapid burst of machine-gun fire is heard. The announcer says Kerry "would keep them illegal" while Bush "will let the assault weapon ban expire."

    Each of those statements is literally true, standing alone. But taken together they suggest Bush is legalizing machine guns, and constitute false political advertising.

    Machine Guns Still Illegal

    Contrary to what the ad clearly implies, any weapon that can fire 300 rounds per minute remains illegal for civilians to own without specific clearance by the US Department of Justice.

    In fact, machine guns have been tightly regulated since the passage of the National Firearms Act in 1934, in the wake of the gangster era. Legal ownership of a machine gun requires an extensive federal background check, fingerprinting, signed clearance from the chief of local law enforcement (such as a county sheriff), a $200 excise tax , and weeks of paperwork. That was true before the assault-weapon ban was enacted in 1994, and it remains true with the expiration of the ban at midnight Sept. 13, 2004.

    That's made clear in a question-and-answer document posted Sept. 13 on the website of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), explaining the effect of the expiration of the assault-weapon ban:

    ATF: All provisions of the National Firearms Act (NFA) relating to registration and transfer of machineguns . . . still apply.

    The fully automatic version of the AK47 -- pictured and described in the ad -- remains just as illegal as it was before the ban expired.

    In fact, the assault-weapon ban only applied to 19 specific semiautomatic firearms (which require a separate trigger pull for each shot) as well as semiautomatic rifles that incorporate at least two military-style features from a list that included folding stocks, bayonet mounts, or flash suppressors. The full definition of previously banned weapons is contained in Title 27 of the Code of Federal Regulations,here .

    The impression created by the ad is correct only in one respect -- the appearance of the weapon shown. It is pictured with a large-capacity magazine, which could hold perhaps 30 rounds of ammunition. Before the ban expired, only magazines holding 10 rounds were allowed. It is true that someone using a newly legal, high-capacity clip could fire more shots without reloading than before the ban. But they still couldn't fire 300 rounds per minute, or anything close to that.

    Whose Fault?

    The ad says "John Kerry, a sportsman and a hunter, would keep them (assault weapons) illegal." But Bush also expressed support. He said during the 2000 campaign that he supported the assault-weapon ban. And in May, 2003 the White House Press Secretary at the time, Ari Fleischer, said Bush still considered extending the ban to be "a reasonable step."

    Q Let me ask you something about the assault weapons ban. I realize the President was for the reauthorization back in 2000. Why does he support that?

    Fleischer (May 8, 2003): Well, the President thought, and said so at the time in 2000, that the assault weapon ban was a reasonable step. The assault weapon ban was crafted with the thought that it would deter crime. There are still studies underway of its crime deterring abilities, but the President thought that was reasonable, and that's why he supported it. And that's why he supports the reauthorization of the current ban. . . . Often the President will agree, of course, with the National Rifle Association. On this issue he does not. . . . In this instance, you know what he said, as you pointed out, in 2000. He continues to believe it today.

    Kerry is currently faulting Bush for not pushing Congress to extend the ban. So are gun-control advocates such as Sarah Brady, wife of former President Reagan's press secretary, Jim Brady. She said on CBS's "The Early Show" that letting the ban lapse was "purely political."

    Sarah Brady: The real onus fell on President George W. Bush. . . . He has exerted absolutely no leadership. We have a president and leadership in the House and Senate that simply do not want to face this.

    That's an opinion, of course. And indeed, we could find no instance of Bush himself even mentioning the assault weapons ban in his official appearances as President. Furthermore, when pressed repeatedly by a reporter Sept. 13, White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan would not cite the name of a single member of Congress that Bush had called to ask that the ban be extended.

    Q Isn't it kind of disingenuous for the President to say that I'm for the assault weapons ban, but then not spend a nickel of his political capital to fight for it?
    McClellan: I disagree. His position has always been well-known, and it's been clear going back to his first campaign for President.
    Q That he was for the ban?
    McClellan: For a reauthorization of the current ban.
    Q . . . so if he's for the ban, and he doesn't do a thing --
    McClellan: Well, keep in mind that the Congress is the one that sets the legislative timetable, and Congress has made clear that it's not going to be coming up. . .
    Q He was happy to let the authorization lapse, wasn't he?
    McClellan: Oh, you know that's a ridiculous assertion.
    Q Name one thing, one step that the President took to have the assault weapons ban reauthorized?
    McClellan: That's why I said, Ron, his position has been very well-known. We've restated that position. It remains unchanged. But he does not set the legislative timetable. Members of Congress set the legislative timetable. And Congress has stated -- congressional leaders have stated that it's not going to come up for a vote.
    Q Is there one congressman, one congressional leader who he has called in Congress, and said, please put it on the timetable? . . .
    McClellan: Let's debate the real issue here . . .
    Q Name one person who he called to lobby on behalf of legislation.
    McClellan: -- his position has been made well-known.
    Q So there's nothing more he could have done to get the ban extended?
    McClellan: Well, I think members of Congress have stated -- congressional leaders have stated that it's not going to be coming up for a vote. . . .
    Q Can you name one person who he's called on the Hill on behalf of this legislation?
    McClellan: Look, members of Congress know his position very well, Ron.
    Q So has he made a call to any of them?
    McClellan: His position is very well-known, Ron, and members have known his position. And it's been discussed with members, too.

    But it is also a fact that Bush was publicly committed to sign an extension if Congress passed it, and it was Congress that failed to do so.


    U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, "Semiautomatic Assault Weapon (SAW) Ban, QUESTIONS & ANSWERS," 13 Sep 2004.

    US Code of Federal Regulations, Title 27, Volume 2: 27CFR478.11.

    US Code of Federal Regulations, Title 27, Volume 2: PART 479--MACHINE GUNS, DESTRUCTIVE DEVICES, AND CERTAIN OTHER FIREARMS.

    U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, "ATF F 5320.4 (Form 4) - Application for Tax Paid Transfer and Registration of a Firearm."

    The White House, "Press Briefing by Ari Fleischer," 8 May 2004.

    Mary Dalrymple, "Kerry blasts lapse of assault weapons ban, promotes crime-fighting program," The Associated Press 13 Sep 2004.

    The White House, "Press Gaggle with Scott McClellan Aboard Air Force One," 13 Sep 2004.
  2. hartzpad

    hartzpad Member

    May 12, 2004
    maybe they were referring to bump-firing, that would fire about 300 rpm, LOL!

    It is very wrong though, I agree.
  3. GhostRider66

    GhostRider66 Member

    Dec 11, 2003
    Fort Worth, TX
    I'm shocked...

    This? From MoveOn.Org? Not from them!

    (What? A little to heavy on the sarcasm?)
  4. Stickjockey

    Stickjockey Member

    Apr 18, 2003
    Happy Valley, Oregon
    Isn't there some way someone or some group could hit them with a false advertising lawsuit?
  5. Rawlings

    Rawlings Member

    Apr 11, 2003
    Ithaca, NY
    ...Maybe if they were selling something... :cuss:
  6. schromf

    schromf Member

    Jan 25, 2004
    Maybe our friends at the BATF could slap them for advertising that machine guns are legal.

    They should, will they? :banghead: :banghead:
  7. Foreign Devil

    Foreign Devil Member

    Mar 29, 2004
    Aren't these the same people who are whining about the loss of civil liberties under the patriot act and counterterror laws?

    Suck it down, hypocrites.

    And I don't think anyone of any consequence takes these people seriously anymore anyway.
  8. dukeofurl

    dukeofurl Member

    Aug 5, 2003
    Central FL
    If you can get 300 rounds per minute out of the AWB legal AK, I've got $20 that says its not the AK that's doing the real work.
  9. Ric

    Ric Member

    Mar 14, 2004
    Northern Indiana
    Did you really think that MoveOn was gonna tell the truth about anything.
    I don't know how they can spin that fast and not get dizzy
  10. Henry Bowman

    Henry Bowman Senior Member

    Dec 30, 2002
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    I must say, the title of this thread is about as remarkable as "Sun Rises in the East."
  11. TarpleyG

    TarpleyG Member

    Dec 28, 2002
    North Carolina
    And this surprises you how exactly? Nothing they peddle over there can be construed as the truth.

  12. jefnvk

    jefnvk Member

    Jun 3, 2004
    The Copper Country, Michigan
    Do you work for Fox News?

    Scroll to bottom

    Not bad, but they could have made it its own story.
  13. J.J.

    J.J. Member

    Jul 14, 2003
    Central Texas
    This story seems to be very popular. I just heard Neal Boortz talking about this moveon.org ad and the Fox news coverage.

    Edited: Just went to Boortz website and his top news story is about "why liberals hate fox news." Hey atleast this propaganda is being shown to be fake by a couple sources.
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2004
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