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Wed Nov 28, 2018, 07:31 PM

Tom Cotton Is Here To Ruin Prison Reform - the one issue that both parties agree on

Tom Cotton Is Here To Ruin Prison Reform
The Arkansas Republican is working hard to blow up a bipartisan deal.

WASHINGTON ― With a blessing from Donald Trump ― a politician so “tough on crime” he still thinks the Central Park Five are guilty ― Congress could pass a bill before the end of the year to make the criminal justice system a little less harsh and a little less racist.

There’s just one problem: Senator Tom Cotton.

“Thousands of people will be released within weeks or months of a bill like this passing,” the Arkansas Republican told HuffPost. “I think it’s a danger to public safety and not sound policy.”

The bill is called The First Step Act. It aims to reduce recidivism and would shorten some prison sentences. Both Republicans and Democrats support the bill. The American Civil Liberties Union likes it, and so does FreedomWorks, the conservative lobbying group associated with the Tea Party movement.

But Cotton is doing everything he can to sour Republicans on the legislation. He railed against the bill during a lively Tuesday lunch meeting with his Republican colleagues, warning them they would be blamed if any recently released prisoner commits a new crime.

“He was the guy who was most sharply against the bill,” Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) told HuffPost. “He’s saying, ‘Someone’s going to get out; we’re all going to lose our seats’.”

And since Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has said he doesn’t want to put the bill up for a vote if it divides his party, Cotton could get his way.

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/tom-cotton-prison-reform_us_5bfeda54e4b0388c1770b520

5 replies, 376 views

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Reply Tom Cotton Is Here To Ruin Prison Reform - the one issue that both parties agree on (Original post)
Demovictory9 Nov 28 OP
Eliot Rosewater Nov 28 #1
Buckeyeblue Nov 28 #2
Demovictory9 Nov 28 #4
pecosbob Nov 28 #3
Demovictory9 Nov 28 #5

Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Wed Nov 28, 2018, 07:32 PM

1. Radar used to say "sometimes a guy just needs to talk to his mom"

I say "sometimes a guy just needs a good hard SLAP"

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Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Wed Nov 28, 2018, 07:50 PM

2. He must have money or donors heavily invested in prisons

Prison sentences should be the last resort. Not the first.

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Response to Buckeyeblue (Reply #2)

Wed Nov 28, 2018, 10:01 PM

4. Agreed. Soulless person rooting for jail sentences to make money

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Response to Demovictory9 (Original post)

Wed Nov 28, 2018, 08:10 PM

3. Research this before taking a position...

Cotton opposes it because he say's the bill doesn't go far enough, but a large coalition of progressives including Eric Holder are denouncing the bill as nothing but cosmetic changes. Having looked into the language I have to concur that mostly it's just a lot of big giveaways for corporate special interests like the private prison industry. In addition none of it is retro-active so it will have zero impact on the current prison population. Virtually all of the reforms it proposes have workarounds Bureau of Prison and DoJ will use to circumvent any real action. Generally speaking this legislation is being pushed by those who stand to profit from it.

https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/5682

https://www.themarshallproject.org/2018/11/16/what-s-really-in-the-first-step-act

And I'll let all of you decide for yourselves what you think this section might portend...

(Sec. 106) It prohibits discrimination against a program, treatment, regimen, group, company, charity, person, or entity based on the fact that it may be or is faith-based.

Huffpost is doing the public a disservice by indicating that the concensus is behind this legislation when that is not the case. Given that they highlight an outspoken conservative's opposition, one might even say it was an attempt to make some readers assume the Dems as a whole support this legislation when that is not the case.

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Response to pecosbob (Reply #3)

Wed Nov 28, 2018, 10:02 PM

5. Ugh. Sorry to hear that

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