Moore asserted that an act of Congress made it "against the law" to fail to stand for the playing of the national anthem. PolitiFact confirmed the existence of the law Moore referenced, but noted that it merely offered guidance on proper etiquette. It did not provide any punishment for improper etiquette.
SNL's Colin Jost said a Texas law made it illegal to own more than six dildos. PolitiFact confirmed a Texas law made owning more than six "obscene devices" illegal. PolitiFact found that a federal court had ruled that law unconstitutional in 2008.
Both laws exist. The one Moore cited carries no teeth because it describes proper etiquette, not a legal requirement backed by government police power. The one Jost cited lacks teeth because the Court voided it.
How did PolitiFact and PolitiFact Texas justify their respective rulings?
PolitiFact (bold emphasis added):
Moore said NFL players taking a knee during the national anthem is "against the law."PolitiFact Texas (bold emphasis added):
Moore's basis is that a law on the books describes patriotic etiquette during the national anthem. But his statement gives the false impression the law is binding, when in fact it’s merely guidance that carries no penalty. Additionally, legal experts told us the First Amendment protects the right to kneel during the national anthem.
We rate this False.
Jost said: "There is a real law in Texas that says it’s illegal to own more than six dildos."From where we're sitting, the thing PolitiFact Texas found "worth clarifying" in its "Mostly True" rating of Jost closely resembles in principle one of the reasons PolitiFact gave for rating Moore's statement "False" (neither law is binding, but for different reasons). As for the other rationale backing the "False" rating, from where we're sitting Jost equaled Moore in giving the impression that the Texas law is binding today. But PolitiFact Texas did not penalize Jost for offering a misleading impression.
Such a cap on "obscene devices" has been state law since the 1970s though it’s worth clarifying that the law mostly hasn’t been enforced since federal appeals judges found it unconstitutional in 2008.
We rate the claim Mostly True.
We call these rulings inconsistent.
Inconsistency is a bad look for fact checkers.
Update Oct. 23, 2017: We appreciate Tim Graham highlighting this post at Newsbusters.