NRA’s LaPierre on Assault Weapons Rhetoric: ‘It’s All a Lie’

Matt Cover | March 27, 2013 | 5:30am EDT
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National Rifle Association CEO Wayne LaPierre testifies on Capitol Hill on Jan. 30, 2013. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

( - NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre says the rhetoric used to push for a so-called assault weapons ban is “all a lie” because the weapons such a law would ban are hardly military-style firearms.

“This whole thing about the fact they're machine guns, they're different, they make bigger holes, they have rapid fire; it's all a lie,” LaPierre said Sunday on NBC’s Meet the Press program. “Gun owners know that. They may be a victim of the lies, but they know the truth.”

LaPierre, who runs the National Rifle Association, said that so-called assault weapons are misnamed, pointing out that guns such as the commonly-cited AR-15 are not nearly as powerful as opponents make them out to be.

“Anybody that knows anything about firearms knows that the AR-15, which uses a .223 cartridge, this is the very low end of the power spectrum of rifle cartridges. Every round that deer hunters use is more powerful: .243, .270, .308, .2506, 7 millimeter.”

LaPierre also said that any semi-automatic weapons ban Congress might enact would be an “absolute abridgement” of the Second Amendment, disputing host David Gregory’s claim that while an assault weapons ban might be ineffective, it wasn’t unconstitutional.

“Oh, it is an abridgement of the -- they're the more commonly owned firearms in America. And it is an absolute abridgement under the Heller case,” LaPierre said, referring to the Supreme Court case that established an individual right to bear arms.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has said that the Senate will vote on an assault weapons ban when it returns from its Easter recess in two weeks, along with another broader gun control measure that includes expanded federal background checks.

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