The White House is claiming the ATF’s AR-15 ammo ban will greatly save cops’ lives, despite AR-15s only accounting for less than 2.3% of recorded murders per the FBI.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters on Monday the ATF’s ban of M855 AR-15 ammunition is a “common-sense step.”

“We are looking at additional ways to protect our brave men and women in law enforcement, and believe that this process is valuable for that reason alone,” he said.

But of the 12,253 murders reported by the FBI in 2013 (the most recent data available,) only 285, or 2.3%, were committed using rifles, including long arms such as bolt-action and single-shot rifles, meaning that semi-automatic AR-15s would account for less than 2.3% of all murders.

In fact, shotguns, which Vice President Joe Biden famously suggested women should use instead of AR-15s, were used more often in murders than AR-15s.

Overall, the use of rifles in murders decreased since 2012, when long arms accounted for a still minuscule 2.5%.

The number of murders involving guns in general plunged from 8,855 in 2012 to 8,454 in 2013, following a steep decline in gun-related violent crimes since the mid-1990s.

Last week we reported the ATF was trying to ban M855 AR-15 ammunition popular with sport shooters by declaring it “armor piercing,” despite the ammo containing lead which exempts it from the classification according to law.

To be considered “armor piercing” under 18 U.S.C. 921 (a)(17)(B), a bullet must have an entirely metal core or have a jacket weighing more than 25% of its weight, which wouldn’t include M855 rounds because their bullets are partly lead.

“While M855 has carried the exemption from a 1986 prohibition on manufacture, importation and sale, (but not possession) of ‘armor piercing’ rounds, it’s clear from the definition that it should have never needed to be ‘exempted,’” Bryan Black of wrote.

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