Saturday, December 20th, 2014

Falsehoods and half-truths in debate on gun control

Of the 74 claims on guns that we've checked, 43 have been rated Half True or lower.
Of the 74 claims on guns that we've checked, 43 have been rated Half True or lower.

A movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colo., that killed 12 people and wounded 58 has prompted new discussions about gun control. If you tune into the debate, be wary of the claims you hear because discussions about gun control have often been filled with half-truths and falsehoods.

PolitiFact has checked 74 claims on the subject of guns and rated 43 Half True or lower; 20 received False or Pants on Fire ratings.

Among our ratings:

The NRA -- We've checked 10 claims from the National Rifle Association and rated five of them False or Pants on Fire. The NRA earned Pants on Fire ratings for a claim that President Barack Obama plans to ban the use of firearms at home for self-defense and for a claim that Obama has "admitted" he is coming for our guns.

The Brady Campaign -- We checked a claim by the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence that you can go on the Florida Department of Agriculture's website and get a permit to carry a hidden, loaded gun. We rated that False.

Lots of Half Trues -- We have awarded lots of Half Trues about guns, including Ted Nugent's claim that four Supreme Court justices have "signed their name to a declaration that Americans have no fundamental right to self-defense"; Vice President Joe Biden's claim that most people who are shot end up being shot with their own weapon; and President Barack Obama's claim that 90 percent of the guns recovered in Mexico come from the United States.

Pants on Fire -- We have found seven claims that were so ridiculously false that they earned our Pants on Fire rating, including a claim from chain emails that you need to list all your guns on your tax return and one that Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton were negotiating a United Nations treaty that would ban handguns.