Congress’ New Bills Show How Conservatives Are Still Tough on Crime

Recently, a few notable organizations have added their voices in support of criminal justice reform efforts in the Senate. The International Association of Chiefs of Police, the Major County Sheriffs’ Association, Concerned Veterans of America and the National District Attorneys Association — none of which are soft on crime — agree: The Senate’s Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act isn’t either.

Neither are former Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, 9/11-era New York Police Chief Bernie Kerik, the states of Texas and Georgia, and a slew of conservative leaders.

And again, all of them know that not only is criminal justice reform not soft on crime, it’s a core conservative policy issue.

In the Senate, conservatives have been negotiating the details of SRCA since last year. The bill tackles reforms to the criminal justice system in two parts: First, it adjusts some punishments by allowing judges to deviate from certain mandatory-minimum sentences. The idea behind this is to ensure that low-level offenders are not tying up precious law-enforcement resources and to refocus on going after the worst criminals.