Virginia governor claims 93 million US citizens die a day

Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe has been called out after mistakenly telling reporters 93 million American people die from gun violence every day.

The erroneous remark came as he was giving a press conference following the shooting of five people at a baseball practice for members of Congress - including Republican Whip Steve Scalise, who was critically injured.

Speaking to media at a press conference just hours after the incident, Mr McAuliffe turned to the issue of gun violence in America - a political cause close to his heart.

"I think we need to do to more to protect all of our citizens. I have long advocated - today is not what this is about - but that we have too many guns on the street," he said.

"We lose 93 million Americans a day to gun violence - I mean I've long talked about this, about background checks and shutting down gunshow loopholes.

"That's not for today's discussion, but we worry about this every day for all of our citizens."

After a follow-up question asking why he was bringing up the issue of gun violence if "today is not what this is about", the 60-year-old again reiterated his original incorrect figure.

Reporters immediately called him out on the figure the second time around, with one asking, "Did you mean to say 93 million? That's a big number - are you sure about that?"

He responded with a perplexed look, delivering the 93 million stat again with a nod, before realising his mistake.

The true figure is significantly smaller - just 93 - so it's likely the inaccurate remark was just a slip of the tongue. If the statistic were true, gun violence would be responsible for the deaths of a quarter of America's 321.4 million-strong population every single day.

However conservative personality Milo Yiannopoulos has suggested the erroneous figure was deliberate. He says Mr McAuliffe was using the shooting to "advance his own political agenda".