News and Commentary

After Blowback, CNN Gun Expert Explains His ‘Full Semi-Automatic’ AR-15 Comment

After CNN was blasted by gun experts online for its segment providing “an up-close look at the AR-15,” the gun expert from the segment responded to criticism about a term he seemed to invent during his demonstration of how the gun operates: “full semi-automatic.”

In a moment from CNN’s AR-15 segment pointed out by the Free Beacon’s Stephen Gutowski and NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch, among others, after firing a few rounds rather slowly, retired Lieutenant General Mark Hertling explains that he is going to use the gun in “full semi-automatic” mode, a line CNN follows by telling viewers that the AR-15 is “a weapon designed to inflict maximum damage.”

A few examples of responses:

As highlighted by Twitchy, with more and more people weighing in on the nonexistence of “full semi-automatic” mode, Hertling responded online to say what many had assumed: He simply misspoke and was not deliberately inventing a new term. In his response, he underscores that CNN had chosen the clip out of his “90-minute discussion” with them.

“The clip about AR 15s with @GaryTuchmanCNN shown on @AC360 tonight. This was a 90 minute discussion and firing put into a succinct 3-minute story by the pros at @CNN,” wrote Hertling. “For all those critiquing my phrase ‘full semi automatic,’ you are correct. I was attempting to inform the crew that I was going from ‘single shot’ to continuous trigger and rapid trigger pull using the semiautomatic capability. My apologies…but perhaps you’re missing the point.”

In other words, the real blame for floating the term “full semi-automatic” should fall on CNN, who chose to keep that particular phrase among the 3 minutes of footage pared down from a 90-minute interview with Hertling.

Related: WATCH: CNN ‘Expert’ Claims Women Can’t Carry Guns Because They Wear Dresses