On Tuesday morning, in the aftermath of the mass shooting in Boulder, Colorado, CNN's New Day show was hard at work peddling misinformation to promote plans by Democrats to enact more gun control in Congress.
Analysts repeated the claim that mass shootings are "unique" to the U.S., claimed that Colorado has "permissive" gun laws, and alluded to the so-called "Charleston loophole" to support a longer potential background check waiting periods for gun sales.
As co-host Alisyn Camerota fretted that, as the pandemic lockdowns wane, mass shootings are on the rise again, CNN homeland security analyst Juliette Kayyem declared that mass shootings are "so unique" to the U.S. and suggested that the uptick in such shootings means that "America is back." Here's Kayyem:
It's a distinctly and sadly American problem, right? I mean, this is something that is so unique to us that, I mean, I think it's hard for Americans to grasp just how accepting we are of this kind of violence. I mean, we get upset and thoughts and prayers, but nothing ever changes.
In the next hour, left-leaning CNN law enforcement analyst Andrew McCabe echoed the same claim even though the U.S. has disproportionately fewer mass shootings than other parts of the world.
Returning to Kayyem, after recalling that there had been an increase in shootings over the past year, just not mass public shootings, she then continued: "So I know a lot of people are saying, 'Well, America is back.' You know what, America never left. We have a gun problem..."
A bit later, even though CNN has a history of praising former Democratic Governor John Hickenlooper for passing gun control measures in 2013 in Colorado, Kayyem claimed that gun laws in the state are "relatively permissive" as she soon added: "This investigation will also go to the access to the gun. Colorado has relatively permissive gun laws, so, how did he access it?"
But, according to Newsweek, Colorado "already has tough gun laws," recalling that the Giffords Center -- which pushes for more gun control -- currently rates 34 other states as having less strict gun laws than Colorado. The state even passed a red flag law in 2019 that went into effect more than a year ago. Additionally, about a year and a half go, the Denver Post reported that King Soopers began a new policy of not allowing the open carry of firearms in its stores.
Several hours after Kayyem's commentary, it was revealed that the gunman, 21-year-old Ahmaud al Issa, bought his gun legally last week.
It is also noteworthy that, as previously documented by NewsBusters, before Colorado passed substantial gun laws in 2013, violent crime in the state had been dropping, but then increased for the next several years after the passage of its gun restrictions, and even defied a national trend in 2018 when it was one of only six states where crime increased as other states saw a decline.
The three-hour New Day show did not make room for any conservative guests or contributors to argue against more gun control, but did include two Democratic members of Congress and liberal contributor Van Jones.
In the second hour, viewers got to see another recurring reaction that liberals often exhibit in the aftermath of a mass shooting as co-host John Berman and Congressman Jason Crow suggested that new gun restrictions might have prevented the Boulder attack, but then hedged by theorizing that a bill pushed by congressional Democrats might instead have prevented other unspecified shootings.
And, even though both the left-leaning Washington Post and right-leaning gun research John Lott have both debunked the myth that white supremacist Dylann Roof could have been denied a firearm if his background check had last a few days longer, Berman called it "common sense" that Democrats are pushing for the FBI to be allowed additional days to conduct a background check before approving a gun sale.
This fact-challenged episode of CNN's New Day was sponsored in part by BMW. Their contact information is linked,
Transcripts follow. Click "expand" to read more.
March 23. 2021
6:05 a.m. Eastern
ALISYN CAMEROTA: How can that be? After a year of basic quarantine in the country, the first thing we do as Americans is go back to mass shootings? I mean, how can that be?
JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN HOMELAND SECURITY ANALYST: So, yeah, so it's a distinctly and sadly American problem, right? I mean, this is something that is so unique to us that, I mean, I think it's hard for Americans to grasp just how accepting we are of this kind of violence. I mean, we get upset and thoughts and prayers, but nothing ever changes. Here's something that's interesting, however. We have a belief that we were all inside -- nothing happened last year. There were not mass shootings like we've seen in the past at schools, theaters and supermarkets. Gun violence was actually up 25 percent. We don't know if that's because of psychological stresses, suicides or whatever else.
So I know a lot of people are saying, "Well, America is back." You know what, America never left. We have a gun problem, and it's one that was persistent through COVID -- the one that may take on more deadly consequences
because people are congregating and out again.
This investigation will also go to the access to the gun. Colorado has relatively permissive gun laws, so, how did he access it? And what kind of weaponry did he have?
ANDREW MCCABE, CNN SENIOR LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: This has become part of the American experience, and let's not forget, it's completely unique to us. There's not another similar country on Earth that experiences the same number and frequency of mass shootings as we do. And it is directly attributable to the profusion and availability of guns and high-powered assault-style weapons, and pretty much anyone can acquire them here in this country.
JOHN BERMAN: I know you were listening to Ryan Borowski -- who was in the grocery store yesterday and saw the shooting -- and I know you heard him say that he's looking to people like you, looking for lawmakers around the country to do something. He assumes, he says, something must be able to get done to try, at least, to slow this down. Your response?
CONGRESSMAN JASON CROW (D-CO): Well, he's right. I mean, he's absolutely right. I'm a lawmaker -- I'm a legislator. You know, Ryan and victims and the survivors of these tragedies are always going to have my thoughts. They're always going to have my prayers. But my job is to make laws. My job is to make better policy to make people's lives better -- to help make people safe -- and they deserve my action.
And this isn't rocket science either. And, you know, one of your prior anchors said common sense would tell you we could do something, but we don't even need common sense. We actually know exactly what we need to do. We've been studying this for a long time -- there are common sense laws and legislation that we can pass that will help make our communities safer. We just have to get that done. It's that simple.
BERMAN: You actually did. I mean, last week, right, you passed two gun laws. H.R. 8 which expands background checks onto private sales and transfers as well. And H.R. 4446 which bans default proceed sales. That's highly specific -- that has to do with what's known as the Charleston loophole which is that, if you don't get a response on the instant background check immediately, you don't just go ahead and sell the weapon, you know. You would think that that would not be controversial. The House passed these laws. Now, I don't know if those laws would prevent -- or pass the bills, I should say they're not laws -- because they don't know what the Senate is going to do with them, if anything. I don't know if they would prevent what just happened at the grocery store, but they might prevent other mass shootings in other circumstances, correct?