NRA Explore
APPEARS IN Legal & Legislation

Factcheck And Brady Campaign Share Same Sugar Daddy-- FactCheck and Brady Campaign in Bed with Annenberg Foundation

Friday, September 26, 2008

FactCheck supposedly exists to look beyond a politician's claims. Ironically, in its analysis of NRA materials on Barack Obama, these so-called "FactCheckers" use the election year campaign rhetoric of a presidential candidate and a verbal claim by one of the most zealous gun control supporters in Congress to refute facts compiled by NRA's research of vote records and review of legislative language.

There's another possible explanation behind FactCheck's positions. Just last year, FactCheck's primary funding source, the Annenberg Foundation, also gave $50,000 to the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence for "efforts to reduce gun violence by educating the public and by enacting and enforcing regulations governing the gun industry." Annenberg made a similar grant for $100,000 in 2005. (source)  

Regardless of the cause, it's clear that while FactCheck swoons over a politician's rhetoric, NRA prefers to look at the more mundane details - like how that politician voted on a bill and what kind of impact that legislation had or may have had on law-abiding gun owners. 

FactCheck claims that NRA advertisements "distort" Barack Obama's anti-gun positions, but FactCheck's own sources prove otherwise. In fact, even Obama's campaign has refused to deny his most extreme positions. 

FactCheck also dismisses NRA's statements as "contrary to what [Obama] has said throughout his campaign." But as FactCheck says, "believing something doesn't make it so." And unless FactCheck is an arm of the Obama campaign, isn't it their job to find out if Obama is telling the truth? 

FactCheck claim: "Obama is proposing no ...ban" on use of firearms for self-defense in the home. 

FactCheck is wrong. Obama supported local handgun bans in the Chicago area by opposing any allowance for self-defense. Obama opposed an Illinois bill (SB 2165, 2004) that would have created an "affirmative defense" for a person who used a prohibited firearm in self-defense in his own home. 

As FactCheck notes, the bill was provoked by a case where a Wilmette, Ill. homeowner shot an intruder in self-defense in his home; the homeowner's handgun was banned by a town ordinance. (After the U.S. Supreme Court found Washington, D.C.'s similar ban unconstitutional, Wilmette repealed the ordinance to avoid litigation.) 

The legislation was very plainly worded, but as limited as its protection was, Obama voted against it in committee and on the floor: 

It is an affirmative defense to a violation of a municipal ordinance that prohibits, regulates, or restricts the private ownership of firearms if the individual who is charged with the violation used the firearm in an act of self-defense or defense of another ...when on his or her land or in his or her abode or fixed place of business. 

If a person cannot use a handgun for self-defense in the home without facing criminal charges, self-defense with handguns in the home is effectively banned. 

Even aside from SB 2165, Obama's support for a total handgun ban (see below) would be a crippling blow to defense in the home, since (as the Supreme Court recently affirmed) handguns are "the most preferred firearm in the nation to 'keep' and use for protection of one's home and family." (District of Columbia v. Heller, 128 S.Ct. 2783, 2818 (2008)). 

FactCheck claim: Obama "did not to 'ban virtually all deer hunting ammunition." 

FactCheck is wrong. Obama voted for an amendment by longtime ammunition ban advocate Sen. Edward Kennedy (S. Amdt. 1615 to S. 397, Vote No. 217, July 29, 2005), which would have fundamentally changed the federal "armor piercing ammunition" law (18 U.S.C. ' 922(a)(7)), by banning any bullet that "may be used in a handgun and that the Attorney General determines... to be capable of penetrating body armor" that "meets minimum standards for the protection of law enforcement officers." 

Federal law currently bans bullets as "armor piercing" based upon the metals used in their construction, such as those made of steel and those that have heavy jackets. (18 U.S.C. ' 921(a)(17)). The Kennedy amendment would have fundamentally changed the law to add a ban on bullets on the basis of whether they penetrate the "minimum" level of body armor, regardless of the bullets' construction or the purposes for which they were designed (e.g., hunting). 

Many bullets designed and intended for use in rifles (including hunting rifles) have, over the years, been used in special-purpose hunting and target handguns, thus they "may be used in a handgun." 

The "minimum" level of body armor, Type I, only protects against the lowest-powered handgun cartridges. Any center-fire rifle used for hunting, target shooting, or any other purpose, and many handguns used for the same purposes, are capable of penetrating Type I armor, regardless of the design of the bullet. 

Obama also said, on his 2003 questionnaire for the Independent Voters of Illinois-Independent Precinct Organization, that he would "support banning the sale of ammunition for assault weapons." (source) The rifles banned as "assault weapons" under the 1994 Clinton gun ban fire cartridges such as the .223 Remington and .308 Winchester - the same ammunition used in common hunting rifles. 

It's true that in 2005, Sen. Kennedy denied his amendment would ban hunting ammunition. But in a floor debate on an identical amendment the previous year, Kennedy specifically denounced the .30-30 Winchester rifle cartridge, used by millions of deer hunters since 1895. "It is outrageous and unconscionable that such ammunition continues to be sold in the United States of America," said Sen. Kennedy. (Congressional Record, 2/26/04, p. S1634.) 

Isn't it FactCheck's job to be skeptical of politicians' claims, especially when the plain language says otherwise? 

FactCheck claim: "Obama says he does not support any ... handgun ban and never has." 

FactCheck is wrong. Obama has never disavowed his support for a handgun ban. On Obama's 1996 questionnaire for the Independent Voters of Illinois-Independent Precinct Organization, he clearly stated his support for "state legislation to ...ban the manufacture, sale and possession of handguns." Although Obama first claimed he had not seen the survey, a later version appeared with his handwritten notes modifying some of the answers. But he didn't change any of his answers on gun issues, including the handgun ban. 

FactCheck itself cites Obama's 2003 questionnaire to the same group. When asked again if he supported a handgun ban, he could simply have said, "No." Instead, as FactCheck notes, he "avoid[ed] a yes-or-no answer" by saying a ban on handguns "is not politically practicable," then stated his support for other restrictions. 

The 1996 and 2003 positions are not at all contradictory. Many anti-gun groups, such as the Violence Policy Center and Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, support total bans on handguns but also support lesser regulations that are more "politically practicable." 

FactCheck claim: Saying Obama supports gun licensing is "misleading." 

FactCheck is wrong. Obama's fancy election-year footwork - claiming he doesn't support licensing or registration because he doesn't think he "can get that done" - isn't enough to get around his clear support for handgun registration and licensing. 

What's really misleading is the idea that handgun registration isn't really gun registration. Handguns are about one-third of the firearms owned in the United States, and American gun owners know better than to think registration schemes will end with any one kind of gun. 

FactCheck claim: Saying Obama would appoint judges who agree with him is "unsupported." 

This FactCheck claim is just strange. Don't most Americans expect that the President will appoint people who agree with him to all levels of the government? And putting all Obama's campaign rhetoric about "empathy" aside, why would judges be any different?

And on the larger issue of Obama's view of the Second Amendment, FactCheck once again takes Obama's spin at face value. While Obama now claims to embrace the Supreme Court's decision striking down the D.C. gun ban, he refused to sign an amicus brief stating that position to the Court. And when Washington, D.C. television reporter Leon Harris said to Obama, "You support the D.C. handgun ban and you've said that it's constitutional," Obama nodded - and again didn't disavow his support. (WJLA TV interview, 2/11/2008.)



Friday, November 20, 2015

Brussels Pushes Gun Control in Wake of Paris Attacks

On November 18, the European Commission expedited a plan to overhaul the European Union’s already restrictive gun control laws. The ...


Friday, November 20, 2015

“F” Stands for Fail: Gun Turn-in Event Nets a Stack of Paper Pledges and Some Surplus Sporting Goods

Recently, we reported on Hillary Clinton’s praise for local firearm “buyback” events and her view that forcing Americans to participate ...


Friday, November 20, 2015

Overwhelming 81 Percent of Current and Former Military have Unfavorable View of Clinton

More bad news for Hillary Clinton. Coming off the heels of survey results that found the former Secretary ...


Friday, November 20, 2015

Anti-gun Politicians, Media Exploit Paris Attacks in “Terrorist Gap” Rehash

The Paris terrorist attacks were not easily pinned on America’s supposedly lax gun laws or the NRA, but ...


Friday, November 20, 2015

Bloomberg’s Lackeys Tweet Solace to Unarmed Victims of Paris Attacks … Some of Them, Anyway

On Friday, Nov. 13, Islamic terrorists carried out a series of coordinated attacks in Paris, France, that left ...


Friday, June 5, 2015

Stop Obama's Planned Gag Order on Firearm-Related Speech

It's happening again— President Obama is using his imperial pen and telephone to curb your rights and bypass Congress ...

Friday, November 20, 2015

California: Urgent: Contact the DOJ TODAY to Voice your Concerns with DOJ’s Proposed Firearm Safety Certificate Regulations

The California Department of Justice (DOJ) is currently considering public comments on a package of proposed permanent regulations to implement ...

Gun Laws  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

CAUTION: Federal and state firearms laws are subject to frequent change. This summary is not to be considered ...

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Florida: BETRAYAL: Report on HB-169 Burden of Proof in Committee on 11/17/2015

HB-169 Burden of Proof  by Rep. Dennis Baxley was heard in the House Criminal Justice Committee on Tuesday, November 17, 2015, at 9:00 AM.In what can only be called a betrayal orchestrated by Republican Committee ...

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Ohio: Concealed Carry Expansion Legislation Passes in the House!

Yesterday, concealed carry expansion, Sub. House Bill 48, passed in the state House by a vote of 68-29. ...


Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.