During debate last week on the Senate floor of the Colorado General Assembly, Senator Vicki Marble (R-Fort Collins) advocated for adopting legislation that would allow Colorado citizens to legally carry a concealed firearm without a permit, using false information in her arguments which was later contested and exposed by Sen. Steve Fenberg (D-Boulder).
In her arguments, Sen. Marble states:
[…] I want to read you something. And please, pay attention. This came out December 10, 1993 [reading from her cell phone]: ‘Waiting periods are only a step. Registration is only a step. The prohibition of private firearms is the goal.’ Janet Reno, U.S. Attorney General, on Good Morning America. I think that explains why we are a strong ‘yes’ for this bill, and why we are a vehemenent [sic] ‘no’ against all and any gun control.
Sen. Fenberg then rose to address the Senate. He began by pointing out an inherent contradiction in the proposed legislation (SB18-097) which would, in effect, override existing Colorado law requiring a state-issued permit in order to legally carry a concealed firearm, while leaving the current law in place.
Fenberg then challenged Sen. Marble’s citation of Reno:
[…] I do this with all due respect, but the quote about Janet Reno — who I don’t take direction from, I don’t think anybody in this chamber takes direction from. I think I was 11 years-old, maybe, when she was supposedly on Good Morning America. […] Mr. President, I don’t know if Janet Reno made that quote, but there is — a quick Google search shows Snopes.com says she did not, that it’s a fabricated quote. […] Again, on this debate and every other debate, I think it’s incredibly important that we base all all of these conversations and decisions for the state of Colorado simply and purely based on fact. And when we quote memes that might not be fact-based and may not have actually been said to justify the pursuit of legislation, I think we need to take that seriously.
The source of Janet Reno’s quote for Sen. Marble’s argument is not known, but a keyword search on Snopes.com website was confirmed to access a fact check post which deems a meme from 2015 –with the same quote and attribution cited by Sen. Marble on the Senate floor — to be false.
Watch an edited video clip of Marble and Fenberg’s Senate arguments below: