Obama: US 'heartbroken' over Sikh temple deaths

August 6, 2012 - 4:43 PM
Obama

President Barack Obama speaks after signing the Honoring America's Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act of 2012, Monday, Aug. 6, 2012, in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama said Monday that Americans are "heartbroken" by a shooting this weekend in which six people were killed at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin.

Obama told reporters in the Oval Office that Americans would "recoil" at the violence if the victims' ethnicity turns out to be have been a factor in the shootings.

"It is important to reaffirm that regardless of what we look like or where we come from or where we worship, we are all one people and we look after one another in this country," Obama said.

The Wisconsin shooting came just two weeks after a gunman killed 12 people at a movie theater in Colorado.

Gun violence occurs with "too much regularity," Obama said.

Obama pledged to "examine additional ways to reduce violence" but stopped short of calling for new gun-control laws.

He spoke to reporters after he signed unrelated legislation at the White House.

A gunman killed six people Sunday in suburban Milwaukee before being shot to death by police. Police identified the gunman as Wade Michael Page, a 40-year-old Army veteran and former leader of a white supremacist heavy metal band.

Obama ordered that U.S. flags be flown at half-staff at the White House and other federal buildings through Friday.