Haley: Boost mental health, not gun control laws

By SEANNA ADCOXAssociated Press

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley says the shooting rampage at a Connecticut elementary school should prompt discussions about mental health treatment, not anti-gun laws.

The Republican governor said Thursday no amount of gun control can stop someone from getting a gun. But she says boosting mental health spending can hopefully detect and treat issues before people become violent.

The mother of 2 says the death of 20 students and six teachers in Newtown, Conn., last week was absolutely heartbreaking but should not lead to emotion-based decision-making.

Haley's budget proposal for 2013-14 includes an additional $11 million for the Department of Mental Health, on top of this year's increase.

She says prior budget cuts decimated the agency, and lawmakers nationwide have put off dealing with mental health issues for too long.

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