Fact Checking the Fact Checker

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Post's Sept. 24 "Fact Checker" on NRA advertisements about Sen. Barack Obama's gun record itself disregarded the facts ["NRA Ads Are Off Target About Obama and Guns"].

The Post claimed that Mr. Obama only wanted to tax "certain types" of guns in 1999. But the sentence in the 1999 article cited in the ad said, "Obama is also seeking to increase the federal taxes by 500 percent on the sale of . . . ammunition . . . ."

The Post also claimed that an amendment Mr. Obama voted for in 2005 would not have banned hunting rifle ammunition, just because the amendment's sponsor, Sen. Edward Kennedy, said it wouldn't. But while pushing the same proposal in 2004, Mr. Kennedy denounced the .30-30 Winchester. Though the .30-30 has been one of the most popular hunting rifle cartridges for 113 years, Mr. Kennedy found it "outrageous and unconscionable that such ammunition continues to be sold in the United States of America."

Finally, The Post incorrectly referred to the expired federal semi-automatic gun ban to support Mr. Obama's claim of not wanting to ban hunting guns. But in 2003, Mr. Obama, as a member of the Illinois Senate Judiciary Committee, voted for a bill that would have banned all but the smallest single-shot and double-barreled shotguns as "assault weapons" in Illinois.

Voting records and legislative language may be trivial to The Post -- but they matter to voters and to the NRA.


Chief Lobbyist

National Rifle Association


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