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FactCheck and Mexican guns

FactCheck.org, which is ordinarily in the tank for Obama, comes out and says that the 90% of guns in Mexico come from the US that the administration parrots is false:

But is it true as President Obama said, that “More than 90 percent of the guns recovered in Mexico come from the United States?” No, it’s not.

The figure represents only the percentage of crime guns that have been submitted by Mexican officials and traced by U.S. officials. We can find no hard data on the total number of guns actually “recovered in Mexico,” but U.S. and Mexican officials both say that Mexico recovers more guns than it submits for tracing. Therefore, the percentage of guns “recovered” and traced to U.S. sources necessarily is less than 90 percent.

Furthermore, the 90 percent figure is based on a badly biased sample of all Mexican crime guns. Law enforcement officials say Mexico asks the U.S. to trace only those guns with serial numbers or other markings that indicate they are likely to have come though the U.S.

Fox News has put the percentage at only 17 percent, but we find that to be based on a mistaken assumption that throws its figure way off. We can’t offer a precise calculation because we know of no hard information on the total number of guns Mexican officials have recovered. But if a rough figure given by Mexico’s attorney general is accurate, then the actual percentage of all Mexican crime guns traced to U.S. sources is probably less than half what the president claims, and more than double what Fox news has reported.

If I had to guess, I would say that the majority of handguns likely do come from the US. But not 90%. I would also say that hardly any of the machine guns, rocket launchers, and anti-aircraft guns the press likes to parade in photo ops comes from the US.

10 Responses to “FactCheck and Mexican guns”

  1. Sebastian Says:

    I wonder whether guns legally exported to Mexico are covered in those figures. Or does it mean traces back to a dealer in the US?

  2. BobG Says:

    I have the same question as Sebastian. I wouldn’t be surprised if a good percentage of those firearms were sold to the Mexican government by the US.

  3. pops1911 Says:

    Dumb question – has anyone pointed this out to the Obama Check…I mean factCheck people? For all the good it would do, but challenge any lie any way we can!!

  4. Jayerandom Says:

    The Factcheck writers appear to have been duped by the BATFE’s intentional conflation of “number of weapons submitted for tracing” (e.g. 11,000 for 2007-2008) with “number of weapons [successfully] traced” (apparently around 6000 for 2007-2008, of which 90% are US sourced.)

    Of course, they have good reason to exaggerate, per Agent Newell’s testimony: “Increased funding for Project Gunrunner, as provided by the stimulus bill is an important investment in the security of our nation and protection of our citizens.”

  5. Chas Says:

    Markie Marxist sez: “You don’t want to call the President of the United States a liar, do you?”

  6. TexasFred Says:

    I want to know exactly where the machine guns, rocket launchers, and anti-aircraft guns ARE coming from…

    We get the blame, particularly TEXAS gun shows…

    I have NEVER seen any of this at a gun show, I know they wouldn’t be doing it out in the open but c’mon, this crap is NOT coming from TEXAS gun shows…

    And as much as it pains me to say it, these weapons may well be coming from Texas, Ft. Hood, Ft. Bliss and the like, have they done hard inventory checks?? It is NOT out of the equation for some cash strapped troops to sell a few things they happen to *find* lying around…

  7. Drinkin' the Franklin Kool Aid Says:

    Road trip with Obama.

    http://franklinkoolaid.blogspot.com/2009/04/road-trip.html

  8. Sailorcurt Says:

    WOW. It must be REALLY obvious that those numbers are bogus if the patently anti-gun factcheck.org has to admit it…even though they obviously massaged the numbers as much as they could to try to discredit the FOX report, the best they could do was 34%.

    Very telling.

  9. M.D. Creekmore Says:

    It is surprising how many people actually believe this type of bull. The media paint images of walking into a gun show and walking out with real full auto AK’s and RPG’s and alike. And people fall for this propaganda. Sad.

  10. Daryl Herbert Says:

    “I would also say that hardly any of the machine guns, rocket launchers, and anti-aircraft guns the press likes to parade in photo ops comes from the US.”

    Machine guns, rocket launchers, anti-aircraft guns, and grenades are very hard to acquire in America. They are probably worth more here than they are worth in Mexico, and that’s not even counting the cost of smuggling them across the border.

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