Joe Biden flipflops on violent crime rates – sometimes they’re going up, sometimes they’re going down – depending on who is in the audience. He uses two vastly different data sources to create his mixed messages.

Biden cites FBI data when trying to convince voters that crime is not out of control, so they feel safe in their communities and reelect him to office. But when he panders to the gun-ban industry, advocates for an “assault weapon” ban, or announces yet another infringement of the Second Amendment as part of his ongoing war on guns, Biden cites mass-shooting data from the Gun Violence Archive.

To be clear, the Gun Violence Archive, which has been widely debunked, collects much more than just mass-shooting data, but Biden never uses any of these statistics. He only cherry-picks GVA’s mass-shooting data, for obvious reasons. The other data shows violent crime has exploded during his presidency – especially when compared to President Donald J. Trump’s term in office.

“Crime is either up or it’s down, but Joe wants to have it both ways, depending upon who he’s talking to,” said nationally syndicated talk radio host, Mark Walters, who first spotted the trend. “And it was only a matter of time before the rest of that GVA data came back to bite him.”

Nearly every type of shooting death tracked by the GVA over the past 10 years increased substantially after Biden took office: Deaths (willful, malicious and accidental), mass shootings, deaths of children (age 0-11, age 12-17), unintentional shootings and suicide by firearms all increased under the Bide-Harris administration.

(Data table courtesy of the Gun Violence Archive.)

GVA Data

Biden has always struggled with the truth. Whenever he wanders off script and speaks extemporaneously, he invents personal stories in which he assigns himself the starring role, which the corporate media usually ignores. But when the president’s falsehoods are actually signed and set into type, it’s a bit more serious.

In an editorial published May 14, 2023, by USA TODAY and reprinted in scores of newspapers across the country, Biden significantly lowered the presidential-truthfulness bar.

In the editorial, which was titled, “President Biden: I’m doing everything I can to reduce gun violence, but Congress must do more,” Biden stressed the need for more Red flag laws, advocated for universal background checks and called on Congress to ban “assault weapons” and standard-capacity magazines, stating: “For God’s sake, do something.”

But then there was this: “We need to do more. In the year after the Buffalo tragedy, our country has experienced more than 650 mass shootings and well over 40,000 deaths due to gun violence, according to one analysis.”

The hyperlink whisked readers to the Gun Violence Archive.

Founded in 2013, the GVA quickly became Biden’s source of choice for mass-shooting data because they hype the numbers. The small nonprofit came up with its own extremely broad definition of a mass shooting, which says anytime four or more people are killed or even slightly wounded with a firearm regardless of the circumstances, it’s a mass shooting. For example, according to the GVA there were 417 mass shootings in 2019. The FBI says there were 30, because it uses a much narrower and more realistic definition, which excludes gang-related and drug-related shootings, which the GVA includes in its data.

Biden and his handlers have cited GVA’s mass-shooting data throughout his presidency in speeches, written statements and social media.

When Biden’s staff announced the creation of the White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention last May, they cited GVA data that claimed there had been 500 mass shooting in the country and 118 firearm-related deaths per day, which Biden said was “far too high.”

In a statement from President Biden released in February after the post-Superbowl shooting, Biden again cited GVA’s mass shooting data, claiming, “We’ve now had more mass shootings in 2024 than there have been days in the year.”

FBI Data

Once national polls started to show that Biden faces a difficult reelection, his campaign quickly sought to tone down any talk of violent crime. The GVA’s mass-shooting data quickly disappeared from their messaging.

Violent crime is decreasing became the new mantra.

According to a statement from President Biden released March 19, “FBI released data showing that crime declined across nearly every category in 2023.”“Last year, we also had one of the lowest rates of all violent crime in more than 50 years and the murder rate saw the sharpest decrease in history,” Biden said in the statement. “That’s good news for the American people.”

According to a statement from President Biden released earlier June 10, FBI violent crime data for the first quarter of 2024 showed, “murders decreased by 26%, robberies by almost 18%, and violent crime overall by 15%. These large decreases follow major reductions in crime in nearly every category in 2023 – including one of the lowest rates for all violent crime in 50 years and significant declines in murder.”

“This progress we’re seeing is no accident,” Biden said in the statement. “My Administration is putting more cops on the beat, holding violent criminals accountable, and getting illegal guns off the street – and we are doing it in partnership with communities. As a result, Americans are safer today than when I took office.”

Neither Biden nor his handlers have ever mentioned that the Crime Prevention Research Center, which is “dedicated to conducting academic quality research on the relationship between laws regulating the ownership or use of guns, crime, and public safety,” reported that more than a third of the country’s police departments – including Chicago, Los Angeles and New York – have stopped sending their crime data to the FBI. Other law enforcement agencies are underreporting their crime statistics, all of which contributed to the FBI’s findings.

Similarly, neither Biden nor his handlers have ever mentioned that 29 states now offer some form or unlicensed or permitless concealed carry, which, if the FBI’s lower crime rates are to be believed, is the most likely cause. Criminals tend to avoid situations where victims can return fire.

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