While victims were still being indentified, Rachel Maddow wasted no time yesterday politicizing the shooting rampage that left 59 dead and more than 500 injured.

During her primetime show Monday night, the MSNBC host immediately blamed gun shows as a major contributing factor, even though an investigation into how it was carried out had just begun. Her assertion comes despite news reports that have instead pointed to purchases from gun stores, particularly one in Mesquite, Nevada.

Reporting live from Las Vegas, she said, “I mean, you might wonder how a civilian wouldn’t draw attention when bringing an armory’s worth of high-powered rifles into a civilian space like a hotel room at the Mandalay Bay casino. And so, maybe there was a big gun show in Las Vegas sometime around now, and maybe that’s why it didn’t seem strange to anybody that this guy had all those guns.”

“It’s a reasonable question, it’s a reasonable line of inquiry from a distance until you look at real gun culture and the way it’s manifest in a place like this, where it turns out, yeah, there was a gun show last weekend. And it turns out there is another gun show coming up this weekend at a casino not very far from here at all. […] There’s always a gun show. Always. Year-round. All year. Every year. It’s not like, “Holiday, it’s a gun show!” It’s like, Saturday, it’s a gun show!”

From her program:

As it turns out, though, Maddow loves guns. “Like, I’m a real liberal, even on, like, gun safety and gun control issues,” said Maddow. “That said, I think that shooting is fun, and I think that shooting ranges are an excellent place to both learn about guns and to freak your friends out!”


What Maddow and her fellow gun-grabbers mean when they cite these events as the culprit in mass shootings is the “gun show loophole.” But its a myth. It’s an exaggeration designed to create a fake impression that this is how bad guys get guns.

A 2001 Justice Department survey found that just 0.7 percent of state and federal prisoners purchased their weapons at a gun show. The overwhelming majority of vendors at gun shows are fully licensed dealers who must run the FBI check at the time of sale.

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