All three networks spent Thursday morning gushing in favor of New Zealand’s new gun ban, touting that it had “widespread, bipartisan support” with “very little opposition.” ABC, NBC and CBS also spent time shaming the U.S. for not adopting a similar buyback measure.
On ABC’s Good Morning America, reporter Eva Pilgrim praised New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern for “stepping up” to ban guns:
“It's been only six days since the terrorist attack targeting two Christchurch mosques left 50 people dead and already New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is stepping up, immediately moving for a sweeping ban on assault weapons in her country,” she applauded. Pilgrim compared the country to ours, critically:
“In the United States where the rate is approximately four times higher, the Second Amendment and political opposition have stalled calls for similar reforms in the wake of mass shootings,” she lamented. Ending her report, Pilgrim admitted that the buyback program was costly and unwittingly revealed this ban might not be as supported as the media is making it out to be:
“[T]hese guns have been pulled from stores to prevent a rush to buy them. As can you imagine it's going to take some time and money to put in this buyback program,” she noted.
NBC’s Today show was also enthusiastic about New Zealand’s Prime Minister taking “swift action” following the two mosque shootings. “Folks are truly stunned this morning by how quickly New Zealand is moving to change its gun laws,” NBC’s Senior International Correspondent Keir Simmons gushed. “The overnight announcement getting attention from both sides of the gun debate in the U.S. .Some demanding America learn lessons from New Zealand’s tough action, others insisting the two countries are just not the same,” he noted.
To the network’s credit, they did attempt to give balance by showcasing both sides of the issue. Simmons quoted Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch in their respective favor and opposition to NZ’s gun ban. However, Simmons let opinion slip in, calling Ardern’s legislation “impactful” “tough action” on guns. Simmons also touted “widespread, bipartisan support” for the ban.
Over at CBS This Morning, anchors Gayle King and Anthony Mason were clearly impressed at the supposed unanimous support for the radical legislation.
“They do things there very differently in New Zealand, the Prime minister making sure this issue is not up for debate. She received, I read, very little if any opposition to this,” King gushed.
Mason added his agreement. “It is interesting how very little opposition there’s been,” he noted. King added, “And how quickly! Six days.”
Mason also compared the U.S. unfavorably to New Zealand, touting their “already much stricter gun laws” and the United States’ hesitance to enact the same legislation, despite “2000 mass shootings since 2012.” A graphic appeared on the screen lecturing, “Since Dec. 2012, no federal gun laws passed.”
Not one network noted that if New Zealanders were completely on board with this, then why did their government immediately confiscate guns from stores, “to prevent a rush to buy them,” as ABC’s Eva Pilgrim noted in her report?
To read all three networks' reports, click expand below:
ABC Good Morning America
7:02:55 AM-7:05:22AM EST
GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: Now to that breaking news, the Prime Minister of New Zealand announced immediate action to ban assault weapons in the wake of that terror attack that killed 50 people at two mosques. ABC's Eva Pilgrim has all the details, good morning, Eva.
EVA PILGRIM: Good morning, George. The shooter legally purchased the weapons used in this attack and the Prime Minister wasting no time banning those very guns, saying ‘it's for all of us. It's in the national interest and it's about safety.’ It's been only six days since the terrorist attack targeting two Christchurch mosques left 50 people dead and already New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is stepping up, immediately moving for a sweeping ban on assault weapons in her country.
JACINDA ARDERN:The time for the mass and easy availability of these weapons must end and today they will.
PILGRIM: The Prime Minister who has vowed to not even say the shooter's name says the drafted legislature targets the type of weapons used in the massacre, one of the most extensive gun control reforms in the country's history.
ARDERN: New Zealand will ban all military-style semi-automatic weapons. We will ban all parts with the ability to convert semi-automatic or any other type of firearm into a military-style semi-automatic weapon.
PILGRIM: In the days following the attack, Ardern acted swiftly on a promise vowing to quickly change the laws in a country where there are an average of thirty firearms for every 100 people. In the United States where the rate is approximately four times higher, the Second Amendment and political opposition have stalled calls for similar reforms in the wake of mass shootings. Just as the first funerals get under way, the Prime Minister outlining those new changes expected to be enacted by April 11th. Thirty people remain in the hospital. Seven in critical condition.
ARDERN: It's about all of us, it's in the national interest and it's about safety. To prevent an act of terror happening in our country ever again.
PILGRIM: And these guns have been pulled from stores to prevent a rush to buy them. As can you imagine it's going to take some time and money to put in this buyback program. They're estimating somewhere between 100 and $200 million. Those gun owners can arrange either online or by calling their local police departments how they will turn these weapons in.
CECILIA VEGA: Amazing how quickly they moved there....
SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: We have a lot more to get to including New Zealand's Prime Minister taking swift action following terror attacks on two mosques there. She's announced a ban on almost all military style semi-automatic and assault rifles. NBC's senior international correspondent Keir Simmons has more on that.
KEIR SIMMONS: Savannah, good morning . Folks are truly stunned this morning by how quickly New Zealand is moving to change its gun laws. The overnight announcement getting attention from both sides of the gun debate in the U.S. Some demanding America learn lessons from New Zealand’s tough action, others insisting the two countries are just not the same. 36 minutes of terror that changed New Zealand's history. Now the country's prime minister promising overnight its laws will change.
JACINDA ARDEN: Time for the mass and easy availability of these weapons must end, and today they will.
SIMMONS: 50 lives lost. The gunman heavily armed with semi-automatic weapons, killing indiscriminately. Less than a week later, New Zealand planning to ban the guns he used.
ARDERN: New Zealand will ban all military style semi-automatic weapons. We will also ban all assault rifles. We will ban all high capacity magazines.
SIMMONS: The new law will take effect in just three weeks and includes a buy back scheme that could cost the country $138 million. But there's widespread and bipartisan support.
NZ MAN: I hope the gun laws can stop it from happening again.
NZ MAN: You can't control the people so you've got to control the law.
SIMMONS: Mass shootings have sparked intense debate in the U.S. for years but nothing like New Zealand's swift action. Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, praising the move, saying on Twitter, ‘Sandy Hook happened six years ago. And we can’t even get the Senate to hold a vote on universal background checks.’ But NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch, tweeting ‘the U.S. Isn't new Zealand. While they do not have inalienable right to bear arms and self defense, we do.’ Overnight, in New Zealand more of the 50 funerals were held amid prayers and grieving and tough action. Here's more of that dramatic new Zealand plan. Amnesty for folks to hand in all military-style semi-automatic weapons and a ban on parts to convert guns into semi-automatics and all high capacity magazines. Perhaps the most impactful part about it is how quickly this law will come into force, by April 11, three weeks from now.
GUTHRIE: Keir Simmons in London, thank you....
CBS This Morning
BIANNA GOLODRYGA: New Zealand banned the sale of military-style semi-automatic weapons, assault rifles, and high-capacity magazines just six days after the deadliest shooting in its history. The swift action comes in response to the attack on two Christchurch mosques that killed 50 people. The gunman used weapons purchased legally online. The prime minister Jacinda Ardern said a complete ban should be in place by April after the passage of new legislation.
ARDERN: I absolutely believe there will be a common view amongst New Zealanders, those who use guns for legitimate purposes, and those who have never touched one, that the time for mass and easy availability of these weapons must end.
ANTHONY MASON: The CEO of one of New Zealand's largest gun retailer supports the measure. He said ‘Weapons of war have no place in our business or our country.’ New Zealand already had much stricter gun laws than the United States and no Constitutional right to bear arms. By one estimate, there have been nearly 2,000 mass shootings in the U.S. since Sandy Hook in 2012. Those are defined as incidents where four or more people were shot. Some U.S. lawmakers have proposed a similar ban on assault weapons, but no legislation has been passed.
GAYLE KING: They do things there very differently in New Zealand, the Prime minister making sure this issue is not up for debate. She received, I read, very little if any opposition to this.
MASON: It is interesting how very little opposition there’s been.
KING: And how quickly. Six days. Yes.