Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Thursday said there’s “no question” that mentally ill people should be prevented from buying guns, a day after a soldier with a history of mental illness killed three people at Fort Hood in Texas.
“There’s no question that those with mental health issues should be prevented from owning weapons or being able to purchase weapons,” Boehner said at a Capitol event.
Earlier Thursday, Army Secretary John McHugh said at a Senate hearing that Spc. Ivan Lopez, 34, had been treated for depression before he opened fire Wednesday at the military base, killing three and wounding 16 before taking his own life.
Boehner and House Republicans have resisted the push by Democrats and President Obama to enact stricter gun laws in the wake of prominent mass shootings, including a 2009 massacre at Fort Hood.
The Speaker pointed to legislation the House and Senate passed late last month to prevent a cut in Medicare reimbursement payments to doctors. He said that bill contained funding for pilot programs studying the link between gun violence and mental illness.
“This issue we need to continue to look at to find a way to keep guns out of the hands of people who shouldn’t have them,” Boehner said.