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Biden calls Glock handgun with 40-round mag a 'weapon of war' in gun control remarks

Leon Neal/Getty Images

President Joe Biden referred to the Glock 45 handgun, a popular firearm available in the civilian market, as a "weapon of war" during a recent gun control announcement.

What are the details?

The president was launching into remarks Thursday during a meeting with his Gun Violence Prevention Task Force when he made mention of fallen New York City Police Department officers Jason Rivera, 22, and Wilbert Mora, 27, who were ambushed and killed while responding to a domestic call last month.

"I’ve spoken to their families, and — and their loss for the city is also a loss for the nation," Biden said, adding, "You know, the future is cut short by a man with a stolen Glock with 40 rounds — a magazine with 40 rounds. And it’s really a weapon of war."

He went on to say, "One of the things I was proudest of years ago when I was in the Senate — I was able to get these weapons and the size of magazines outlawed. That got changed. It got overruled. But I don’t see any rationale [as] to why there should be such a weapon able to be purchased."

"It doesn’t violate anybody’s Second Amendment rights to deny that," he argued. "But anyway, their futures were cut short by a man with a stolen Glock and that 40-round magazine."

The man accused of killing Mora and Rivera, 47-year-old Lashawn McNeil, abruptly opened fire on the officers with a Glock 45 handgun with a 40-round magazine as they approached the back bedroom of an apartment where he was staying. McNeil's mother had reportedly called the police after getting into a fight with her son.

What else?

Biden appeared to imply the mere existence of the semi-automatic handgun outside of a military environment was a primary cause of the crime.

But American Military News pointed out that federal law prohibits convicted felons from possessing firearms and New York state law prohibits possession of firearm magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds.

At the time of the shooting — which occurred in Harlem, New York — McNeil was on probation. According to NYPD Chief of Detectives James Essig, he had a criminal history that included a gun charge in North Carolina, an assault on a police officer in Pennsylvania, and a felony narcotics charge in New York City.

The Glock 45 is one of the most popular handguns sold in the United States, according to Gun Source. It uses 9x19mm ammo and is normally sold with a standard mag capacity of 17.

Anything else?

Later in the meeting, Biden suggested limitations to the Second Amendment as a way to curb gun crime, alleging that "no amendment is absolute."

He also repeated a dubious claim that when the amendment was passed, private citizens weren't allowed to purchase cannons. That statement has been fact-checked and declared "false."

"There’s no violation of the Second Amendment right," he said. "We talk like there’s no amendment that’s absolute. When the amendment was passed it didn’t say anybody can own a gun, any kind of gun, and any kind of weapon. You couldn’t buy a cannon when this amendment was passed so there’s no reason why you should be able to buy certain assault weapons. But that’s another issue."

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