Mike Huckabee claimed during a Monday night interview with Martha MacCallum that the reasons behind the nation’s mass shootings are ultimately spiritual.

Following an interview with Warren Farrell, whose book The Dad Deficit explains the negative social effects of absentee fathers, MacCallum introduced the former Arkansas governor by asking her audience to consider the fallout of collapsing “mediating institutions” such as “churches, rotary clubs, Girl and Boy Scouts.”

Huckabee agreed that such stabilizing institutions are indeed “going extinct,” for which reason “kids are not growing up.” He reiterated Farrell’s assessment that the collapse of the family has been culturally catastrophic.

“There are so many boys who are growing up who are lost, they’re lonely, they feel a sense of rage because perhaps their fathers have left them. They’d love to identify with their fathers but they can’t because their father has disappeared, and they take it personally. They feel like maybe they did something wrong.”

Huckabee, who is also an ordained Southern Baptist minister, asserted that one effect of absentee fathers is that it often inclines young men away from spiritual solutions that might help them. “Those of us who would try to say, ‘Well, look for spiritual answers.’ How can you tell a young man that God wants to be your Father if his image of a father is someone who abandoned him or beat up his mother? This is why we have to rethink, but recognize at the same time, that ultimately the hole in the human heart can never be filled just by human things. It has to be filled ultimately by spiritual things that give people a higher sense of who they are, what their identity is, and why they matter.”

Huckabee then went on to say that mass shooters are drawn to hateful, fringe ideologies because they lack the feelings of significance once derived by relationships to God and family.

MacCallum then read a tweet from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who wrote Monday, “People suffer from mental illness in every other country on earth; people play video games in virtually every other country on earth. The difference is the guns.”

Huckabee seemingly dismissed Clinton’s explanation and denounced the urge to politicize mass shootings and blame them on President Trump. Referencing earlier shootings in the nation’s history, Huckabee said, “I don’t remember anybody blaming Bill Clinton, her husband, or Barack Obama. We had mass shootings when they were presidents. It is not a president’s fault, whether it’s Trump, Obama, or George W. Bush.”

“It’s our cultural fault,” Huckabee continued. “And part of what we have done, we’ve created a culture in which we said there is no God and human life isn’t really worth that much, and life is expendable, and there are lives that are disposable. And when a young man believes his life is disposable and expendable, he thinks the lives around him are, too. So why are we so shocked that he would be taking mass killings as his avenue of expressing his rage?”

Acknowledging Huckabee’s point, MacCallum noted that many of the young men who commit mass shootings are also suicidal.