This legislation is a very important step forward, though not nearly as bold as it needs to be. Although undoing the police state that has been built up over the past 50 years will certainly take time and require a great deal of comprehensive reform. Not exactly the fascism Trump was supposed to bring. Apparently, a ruling class consensus is developing that the prison-industrial complex has become too much of a cost liability (even if a few Know-Nothings are still dragging their feet).
By Seung Min Kim
President Trump threw his support Wednesday behind legislation that would loosen some mandatory minimum sentencing laws — a measure backed by powerful Senate Republicans and Democrats, but which could run into opposition from some tough-on-crime conservatives.
At an afternoon event at the White House, Trump officially endorsed the First Step Act, which he said included “reasonable sentencing reforms while keeping dangerous and violent criminals off our streets.” He urged lawmakers to send him a bill, saying: “I’ll be waiting with a pen.”
“Today’s announcement shows that true bipartisanship is possible,” Trump said. “This is a big breakthrough for a lot of people. . . . They’ve been talking about this for many, many years.”
The compromise criminal justice measure, which was hammered out in principle over the summer by a bipartisan group of senators, adds four provisions to a House-passed bill that focused on reducing prisoner recidivism.