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VERIFY: Does Kari Lake want to legalize rocket launchers?

The Democrat-funded, Katie Hobbs-approved ad makes several claims about Kari Lake. We check if they are true.

PHOENIX — The airwaves of Arizona are filled with campaign ads trying to convince or mislead you into voting against a candidate, but are the claims accurate?

THE AD:

“Kari Lake, she’s not just radical, She’s dangerous.”

That's the main message from a campaign ad attacking republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake. The ad is funded by the Arizona Democratic Party and authorized by Democratic candidate Katie Hobbs.

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CLAIM 1: ABORTION


“Lake wouldn’t just ban abortion, she’d criminalize it.” The ad said.

12News can verify Kari Lake does support Arizona’s territorial ban on abortions. 

The ban outlaws abortion in all cases except to save a mother's life. The ban also includes a criminal penalty for any doctor that performs an illegal abortion.

Kari Lake's campaign tells 12News, "It is not controversial to want to protect the lives of the unborn and of the mother."

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CLAIM 2: ROCKET LAUNCHERS?


“So radical, she would even legalize rocket launchers.” The ad says.

This claim comes from a December 2021 interview on Timcast IRL. Around the 48-minute mark, Lake and the hosts start a discussion on the second amendment and if it covers the right of private citizens to possess rocket launchers.

In an email, Lake's campaign reiterated her support of the Second Amendment and rocket launchers.

"Katie Hobbs should brush up on her knowledge of gun rights in Arizona before she tries to come after Kari," the campaign said.

Rocket launchers are actually legal in the United States and regulated under the National Firearms Act (NFA). The NFA was originally passed back in 1934. According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Tobacco, the law's underlying purpose was to "curtail, if not prohibit, transactions in NFA firearms.

Congress found these firearms to pose a significant crime problem because of their frequent use in crime, particularly the gangland crimes of that era such as the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre." The original legislation levied a $200 tax on the weapons. At the time, the tax was quite severe and believed to be a good way to cut down on the sale of these weapons. The $200 fine has not changed since that day.

While Arizona does not seem to have a restriction on rocket launchers, the state does ban the rockets or explosives themselves. (page 6 "Prohibited Weapons")

12News asked the Lake campaign if she supports the legalization of rockets or if she just supports rocket launchers but received no response.

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CLAIM 3: CAMERAS IN THE CLASSROOM


“And lake wants to politicize our schools by using cameras to record everything our kids say or do,” The ad reads.

This claim is from a radio interview last November when Lake appeared on The Morning Ritual with Garret Lewis. Around the 10:20 mark, Lake begins discussing how she wants to "Bring accountability back into the classroom."

Lake compared the cameras to police body cameras. "I want to see these same types of accountability measures in the school. Put cameras in the classroom."

Lake lays out a potential plan over the next few minutes. She tells the host that the cameras would allow cops to look at a live feed during an active shooter situation and parents to request video of what went on in the classroom up to six months later.

Lake's campaign reiterated that she supports the concept.

"Arizona's schools are under assault by a radical, racist, Woke Left intent on indoctrinating our children. Holding public school bureaucrats accountable, putting parents back in charge of the education system, and keeping Arizona's children safe will be one of Governor Lake's top priorities." Lake's campaign said.

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