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Congressional candidate Steve Lonegan (R-N.J.) said the Florida school shooting should be a sign that it is time to return prayer to the public school classroom.

Lonegan told Hackensack's AM-970 that the incident that left 17 dead and numerous wounded shows how "disturbing [it is] that society has deteriorated to this point morally."

Lonegan previously served as mayor of Bogota - about 5 miles west of New York City - and ran unsuccessfully for senate against Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.).

He said Americans should "turn to the Bible and to God" and react "with love" to friends or family displaying personal issues.

Lonegan said President Trump handled the aftermath of the tragedy "perfectly," and called the shooting a "brutally-difficult thing to confront emotionally and sensibly."

"If there's ever a time to return prayer to the classroom, now is the time," he said.

In regard to his electoral bid, Lonegan and host Kevin McCullough said the congressional district misses the conservative voice it once had in former Rep. Scott Garrett (R-N.J.).

Lonegan said he is seeking to unseat freshman Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.) in the sprawling district, which extends from Blairstown and the Skylands to within a stone's throw of the George Washington Bridge.

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