ACLU Targets McConnell in Fight for Bipartisan Criminal Justice Reform Legislation

November 27, 2018 10:15 am

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. —The American Civil Liberties Union launched a radio ad buy in the Louisville market today, urging Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to bring bipartisan criminal justice reform to the Senate floor for a vote.

The First Step Act is the next stage in a series of efforts over the past 10 years to achieve federal criminal justice reform. The bill would reform sentencing laws, including reducing some mandatory minimums, and may create new rehabilitative programs for those currently in federal prisons. It has the support of the White House and members of Congress in both parties, but the majority leader has yet to pledge that he will move the bill forward.

“The common sense agreement would give inmates who have served their time a second chance at life,” the ad states. “Rand Paul said it right — Mitch McConnell has the ‘complete and absolute power to allow this to happen.’ So call Mitch McConnell: Tell him to stop obstructing, and allow an immediate vote on the First Step Act now.”

Faiz Shakir, national political director at the ACLU, said, “Mitch McConnell is singlehandedly blocking a bill to restore justice for thousands of individuals. The ACLU and our partners in the civil rights community have spent decades fighting for these meaningful reforms, which would change the lives of individuals impacted by mass incarceration, and their families. We can’t allow Sen. McConnell to squander this moment; he must give the First Step Act an immediate vote.”

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