"Fact Checkers" Attack Columnist, Ignore Illegality Of ATF Ammo Ban

It would be a wonderful thing if so-called “fact-checkers” such as Snopes and PolitiFact were actually neutral and unbiased truthseekers. Unfortunately, the people feigning objectivity at these organizations have a clear partisan bias in not only how they cover a claim, but in what they choose to cover.

Recently, Paul Bedard, a columnist for the Washington Examiner, wrote a column about the Obama Administration’s attempt to ban M855, a common FMJ ball cartridge prized by shooters of 5.56 rifles (primarily AR-15s, but also Tavors, FS2000s, some AKMs, and other modern sporting rifles).

PolitiFact challenged Bedard’s claim.

“President Obama is using executive actions to impose gun control on the nation,” Bedard wrote Feb. 27, 2015. “Targeting the top-selling rifle in the country, the AR-15 style semi-automatic, with a ban on one of the most-used AR bullets by sportsmen and target shooters.”

Politifact dedicated their entire column to destroying Bedard’s claim, by asserting—with a fair degree of dishonesty—that an action by an agency in the Executive Branch is not an “executive action.”

They rate Bedard’s claim as “mostly false.”

I rate Politifact’s claim as “mostly avoiding the issue to defend the indefensible.”

ATF’s attempt to ban common M855 ammunition is a gross abuse of federal law, grossly exceeding both the spirit in which the Law enforcement Officers Protection Act of 1986 was written, and the actual statutory language defining the physical properties of the ammunition that the Bureau may and may not ban.

As a result, a bipartisan majority of the House of Representatives have signed a letter opposing the ban, which, if allowed to go unchallenged, would set a precedent that may allow the ATF to ban common rifle ammunition by executive fiat, including common hunting ammunition.

It’s sadly apparent that PolitiFact is more interested in fighting those who would fight the power to defend a political ally (the Obama Administration) than they are actually critiquing the gross abuse of power that is the ATF’s “framework” argument, an abuse of an act designed to save police from actual purpose-designed armor-piercing handgun ammunition.

Sep 28, 2021 2:30 PM ET