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Texas congressman: Principal should have been armed for self-defense

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(CNN) - U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert said the deadly Connecticut school shooting could have been halted sooner if staff at the school had been equipped with guns.

"I wish to God (the principal) had an M4 in her office, locked up, so when she heard gunfire she pulls it out … and takes him out, takes his head off before he can kill those precious kids," the Republican from Texas said on "Fox News Sunday."

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The gun control debate has been renewed since 20 students and six adults were killed Friday at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. Many lawmakers and politicians have called for the renewal of the federal assault weapons ban, a piece of legislation that expired in 2004 at the end of its 10-year term but has yet to be renewed.

Gohmert argued that as the country takes on a conversation about gun rights, people must be "open-minded." He said emotional reactions will naturally lead to a desire to "get rid of all guns," but he said that "you (should) use your head and look at the facts."

"Every mass killing of more than three people in recent history has been in a place where guns were prohibited, except for one," he said, arguing for looser gun laws so more people can be armed for self-protection. "They know no one will be armed."

Gohmert made headlines in July when he made similar remarks, saying more deaths could have been prevented in the Aurora, Colorado, movie theater shooting if someone could have fired back at the gunman.

Asked why people need guns in places such as schools, malls and movie theaters, Gohmert said, "For the reason George Washington said, 'A free people should be an armed people.' "

The Second Amendment, he said, "ensures against the tyranny of the government if they know the biggest army is the American people."

On a separate show Sunday, former Education Secretary William Bennett made a similar argument, saying the political debate should be put on hold while emotions are still high.

"The whole nation is mourning. It's an important moment. Let the tears dry before we head off into all these directions at once," he said on NBC's "Meet the Press."

Bennett, a Republican, also agreed with the idea that schools should have a gun.

"I'm not so sure I wouldn't want one person in a school armed, ready for this kind of thing," he said. "It would have to be someone who's trained, someone who's responsible, but my God if you can prevent this kind of thing."

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