GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee said Friday he wishes there was a simple solution to the issue of gun violence and mass shootings in the United States, but he thinks if there was one, "we would have found it by now."
"We know most of these people are mentally deranged, so do we need to do a better job in mental health? You bet we do," the former Arkansas governor said in an interview on CNN's "At This Hour."
"Do we need to have a better understanding of what the signs are? You bet we do. Do we need to have a more aggressive approach to people who are mentally ill and showing these signs to keep firearms out of their hands? Of course we do. But that's not the solutions I hear."
But said he keeps waiting for someone to tell him what gun laws can be passed to prevent shootings like the one that occurred Thursday in Oregon, or others in Sandy Hook, Conn., Aurora, Colo., or Charleston, S.C.
One issue, said Huckabee, is that from postings made online, the shooter in Oregon wanted to be famous.
"Who makes him famous? Frankly, it's all of the television networks that go 24/7 putting up his name and face," said Huckabee. "I'm wondering if part of the conversation we need to have is whether or not, instead of tinkering with the Second Amendment, I never hear anybody say, let's tinker with the First."
He continued to be clear, he does not want to put government restrictions on the media, but at the same time, he agrees with police official in Oregon who said he would not be releasing the shooter's name.
Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin has vowed never to utter the shooter's name, calling the killings 'a horrific act of cowardice.' But a law enforcement source confirmed media reports naming the suspect as Chris Harper-Mercer, 26
Meanwhile, Huckabee said he stands behind statements he's made in the past about arming more people for protection against such events.
"What stopped that shooter in Oregon yesterday?" Huckabee asked. "It was a police officer with what? A conversation? Reading from a book? It was a cop with a gun that stopped him."
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