It has been a repeated criticism of gun control advocates: The people who want to ban guns just don’t seem to know a whole lot about firearms.
CNN anchor Jake Tapper on Thursday addressed recent statements by President Barack Obama and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, which suggest neither truly understand the difference between a semi-automatic and fully-automatic weapon. Tapper argued that a little knowledge could help anti-gun advocates make a more compelling case in their quest for more gun control.
Obama on Wednesday told supporters at a closed-door Democratic fundraiser in California that the children at Sandy Hook were killed by a “fully-automatic weapon in that case, sadly.”
“That is not correct,” Tapper said bluntly. “It was a semi-automatic weapon, not a fully-automatic weapon. Most fully-automatic weapons, machine guns, are essentially banned to the public.”
Tapper noted that the White House has since claimed that Obama “misspoke.” However, he explained, it isn’t the first time a leading gun control advocate has displayed ignorance on the topic of guns.
Case in point: Back in December, Bloomberg argued that the public shouldn’t be allowed to own “assault weapons” because they can spray bullets with a single trigger pull. Needless to say, that is a wildly inaccurate claim. Only fully-automatic weapons are capable of such automatic fire.
Bloomberg was corrected by the journalist conducting the interview, to which the mayor replied, “OK.”
“The gun debate is worth having. We will have that conversation on this show,” Tapper said “But it might help the advocates of gun control if, in their advocacy for stricter measures, they seemed more familiar with what exactly they’re trying to ban.”
Watch the segment via CNN below:
(H/T: Noah Rothman, Mediaite)