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Justice Breyer Criticizes Mandatory Minimum Sentencing, Saying It's Unfair

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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 04:58 AM
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Justice Breyer Criticizes Mandatory Minimum Sentencing, Saying It's Unfair
Justice Breyer Criticizes Mandatory Minimum Sentencing, Saying It's Unfair and Inflexible
By Martin Finucane Associated Press Writer
Published: Sep 22, 2003


BOSTON (AP) - Mandatory minimum sentences are unfair and take away flexibility needed in the judicial process, said Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer.
"There has to be oil in the gears. ... There has to be room for the unusual or the exceptional case," he told about 550 people Sunday at the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum.

Breyer said Congress had passed a number of mandatory minimum statutes where "there is no room for flexibility on the downside."

"That is not a helpful thing to do," he said. "It's not going to advance the cause of law enforcement in my opinion and it's going to set back the cause of fairness in sentencing."

Last month, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy told the annual meeting of the American Bar Association that he favored scrapping the practice of setting mandatory minimum sentences for some federal crimes, saying that in all too many cases the sentences were unjust. (snip/...)

http://ap.tbo.com/ap/breaking/MGAJDU0BWKD.html
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CheshireCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 11:35 AM
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1. Good to see
some judges speaking out against the travesty of mandatory minimums. Hope this leads to the repeal of these laws.
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benfranklin1776 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 11:43 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. Likewise.
Edited on Mon Sep-22-03 11:51 AM by benfranklin1776
It will take a concerted effort by Breyer Stevens Ginsburg Kennedy and Souter to begin a movement to repeal these laws and raise awareness of their draconian effects. Such a movement is long overdue and takes new import in light of Jumping Johnny Asscraft's desire to single out judges who deviate below the sentencing guidelines and subject them to inquisition from his allies on the Judiciary committee. Johnnies gotta keep that prison industrial complex humming don't cha know!
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maggrwaggr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 11:41 AM
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2. Isn't he a little LATE chiming in on this?
I mean where the hell has he been the last so many years?

Maybe he just noticed that the prisons are overflowing with people who don't need to be there.

Idiot. Head up his ass.
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denverbill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Sep-22-03 11:46 AM
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4. Well, the problem is this Justice Breyer.
Rich, well-connected people always get off lightly without mandatory minimums.

While I agree that many deserving people probably are treated more harshly than circumstances would dictate, at least mandatory minimums guarantee that occasionally a well-connected person will pay for their crimes.
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