When Are Republicans Going To Stop Lying About The Gun Bills?

7NEWS reported from yesterday's debate over the state's General Fund budget bill, known as the "Long Bill."

[T]he State Senate's initial approval of the overall budget plan came without Republican support. The minority party said they wouldn't be on board with the spending package because they're upset with Democratic legislation this year.

Republican Sen. Kent Lambert, one of the GOP budget writers, cited the Democrats' bills this year placing new restrictions on firearms as one reason he will oppose the budget.

Here's a brief clip of what Sen. Kent Lambert of Colorado Springs actually said about those gun bills:

LAMBERT: We have banned, effectively banned gun ownership, from the citizens of the state, including our active duty military members, and our National Guard members. [Pols emphasis]

Sixteen seconds of video. If you'd like, you can queue up the video archive of yesterday's Senate debate on the "Long Bill," Sen. Lambert said this at about 11:45AM.

Just about every news report about yesterday's Senate debate on the budget mentioned that Sen. Lambert "objected" to gun safety bills as a stated reason why Republicans were voting against the budget. The only news reporter who quotes Lambert claiming that these bills have "effectively banned gun ownership," though, appears to have been Bente Birkeland at KUNC community radio–not exactly a major outlet.

Now, everyone reading this understands that Sen. Lambert is lying, right?

It is possible that you are not aware of this, given that the media seems to be uninterested in reporting the bizarre and completely false assertions made during the gun debate by elected Republican legislators and their allies in the gun lobby, which continue unchecked as evidenced by Sen. Lambert's remarks yesterday. So let us say again, once more for the record because the media apparently can't be bothered, that none of the gun safety bills signed into law in Colorado "effectively ban gun ownership." Colorado passed legislation requiring the same background checks performed at gun stores and gun shows on most other sales and transfers of guns, with reasonable exemptions. The state also limited magazine capacity to 15 rounds, which is a more generous limit than many other states that have restricted magazine capacity. In neither case can any reasonable interpretation of the laws passed, nor the experience with their implementation in other states, be considered "banning gun ownership."

So folks, why the hell are Republicans being allowed to lie like this? 

 

We recognize that the media cannot report on every detail in the course of long legislative debates. But when lawmakers intentionally push extreme falsehoods, in a climate where misinformation, outright lies, and emotion have already incited irrational public anger–and worse, with two people now up on felony charges for threatening Democratic legislators–doesn't the media have an obligation to do something?

Yes, that is perhaps an uncomfortable responsibility for reporters constantly trying to balance their access with their journalism. But if somebody doesn't speak up–if these lies are allowed to be spread from the well of the Colorado Senate with no one to stand up and say "enough?" Where does it end, folks?

This is wrong. Sure people lie in politics, but this debate over what are actually pretty moderate gun safety bills has repeatedly crossed over the line. Like it or not, the threats of violence and irrational anger stoked by opposition to these bills has gone far beyond any responsible justification for those who have benefited from it. We, and by that we mean everyone–journalists, civic and political leaders, civil society, philanthropy, the chattering class, the pundits, opponents of these bills with any credibility, everyone to whom an ounce of public trust is given or presumed–needs to speak up, and put a stop to the unchecked lying. We are a better state than this.

14 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. JeffcoBlueJeffcoBlue says:

    Excellent post. When reporters put the need to have conflict to report over accuracy, this is what happens.

    If the public knew the crazy shit Colorado Republicans say, there would be far fewer Colorado Republicans. I guess that would be bad for Lynn Bartels and conflict driven false equivalency boxing match journalism, but it would be good for everyone else.

  2. EccentricRepublicanEccentricRepublican says:

    Since when is there a law against Republicans lying? Believe me, if that ever got proposed, I'd vote no. Freedom of speech means being able to say whatever you want, including that UN stormtrooper rape gangs will be conducting "voluntary" firearms collections drives as part of HB-1229. It's right there in the bill, next to the mandatory class, taught by Rep. Joe Salazar, on how to vomit and pee yourself when confronted by a rapist.

    I just can't believe Evie Hudak wants to kill every child for whom "the stats aren't on your side." Because all children have a removable baseplate, that means she wants to kill every child! Democrats are such monsters, or maybe zombies. I'm not sure which anymore.

    Don't take any of it too seriously, though, already unstable gun owners! If you do we're not responsible.

  3. Duke CoxDuke Cox says:

    When they stop lying about everthing else, I guess…

    from the WSJ, yesterday..

    author is Scott Thurm…

    Restaurant owners have been fierce critics of the health-care overhaul law, fearing that its mandate for employers to offer insurance more broadly will drive up costs and deter hiring.

    Now, some operators say the law may not be that costly after all. They say many employees won't qualify for coverage, and many of those who do qualify will decline company-offered insurance.

    Wendy's Co. (WEN) initially estimated the health-care law would increase the cost of operating each of its 5,800 U.S. restaurants by $25,000 a year. But Chief Financial Officer Steve Hare told an investment conference on March 14 that executives have cut the estimate by 80%, to $5,000 a year, primarily because they expect many employees to decline the insurance offering.

    "It is still going to be an additional cost that both the company and our franchisees will have to absorb, but we think it is going to be manageable," Mr. Hare said. A Wendy's spokesman said the company continues to refine its cost estimates (emphasis, mine) and it would be "premature" to discuss them further.

    Executives of other restaurant chains, including Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. (CMG), Jack in the Box Inc. (JACK) and Popeye's Louisiana Kitchen, have offered similar cost estimates in recent months.

    If you choose to visit the Journal and read the rest of the story, be prepared for some very spotty proofreading.

    Turns out their insurance isn't in big demand AND the sky didn't fall…

    Whoda thunk?

     

     

  4. Duke CoxDuke Cox says:

    Hey Pols…lend a guy a hand, willya? Don't know how that happened…sorry.

  5. BlueCat says:

    As ArapG demonstrates constantly, they can't stop lying because they don't understand what a lie, an opinion, a fear or a fact is and how they differ from one another.  

    They think stating a fear or a concern as a settled fact is perfectly OK..  A concerrn that something might lead to confiscation becomes confiscation that is actually happening in their minds.  They can't help it. 

    I blame the education system that taught everybody they were special and that every piece of crap they produced was worthy of gold stars and smiley faces just because and one "opinion" is a s good as another, never mind whether one is based on facts and the other pulled out of one's ass. They lie because they don't know how to determine, much less tell, the truth.

    Except for the ones at the top who lie while knowing the truth perfectly well to manipulate the drones.

    • The realistThe realist says:

      For me, an easier explanation of conservative "group think" is that the social norms of the Republican Party do not allow for divergent thinking. There are unwritten rules that demand a fairly high degree of uniformity of thought and loyalty to leaders (elected and otherwise).  Always reminds me of the old fable, The Emperor's New Clothes, in which loyalty to the Emperor demanded that his subjects "see" his new clothes (which were only imaginary).  It interestes me, too, that Republicans must experience mental whiplash on a regular basis because what they're allowed to believe from day to day or year to year, goes through many changes.

       

       

  6. bullshit!bullshit! says:

    What infuriates me is, the media reports on the "anger," but not on the horseshit statements like this one that fuel the anger. The public knows gun owners are pissed off, but nobody ever hears how they are pissed off about shit that isn't true.

    Reporting half the story gives the weaker half legitimacy it doesn't deserve. That's the problem.

    • Duke CoxDuke Cox says:

      The one thing that they ALL have in common is intellectual laziness. Low information voters; head-in-the-sand, one issue zealots; self-righteous religious nuts (of any faith); and the just plain stupid are easily manipulated by the greedy intelligent ones who recognize this phenomenon and capitalize on it.

      Rush, Rove, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Armey, LaPierre, and on and on. There is a veritable army of manipulators who cash in on the vast resource of the lazy, uneducated, populace who can't or won't open their minds, but prefer to cower in their ignorance. Content to feed at the trough of lies and innuendo poured out daily by unscrupulous assholes, these people are there for the exploiting.

      I am sad to say I have a few family members who fall into that unfortunate category. They don't want to question or challenge the lying bastards who line their pockets by pandering to this horde of unsophisticated, unenlightened, Americans. Of course, it is not unique to the U.S.of A. It is an age old, worldwide, phenomenon. The rich and powerful have gleefully manipulated the ignorant since mankind stood erect and started accumulating wealth.

      It has become almost an art form…well…actually, when I think of the right wing media, it has fully become an artform…with Fox News holding sway as the Louvre of Lulz…so to speak.

       

Leave a Reply

Comment from your Facebook account


You may comment with your Colorado Pols account above (click here to register), or via Facebook below.