In the News

Trump fails the first test of the First Step Act

Author Ed Chung explains why William Barr's nomination for U.S. attorney general is bad news for federal criminal justice reform efforts—particularly the recently ratified FIRST STEP Act.

Next week’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing to consider the nomination of William Barr to be the next attorney general of the United States will be an important test of the Trump administration’s commitment to goals of the recently enacted Formerly Incarcerated Reenter Society Transformed Safely Transitioning Every Person Act, commonly known as the FIRST STEP Act, is a bipartisan criminal justice reform legislative package. Unfortunately, from what we know of Barr, President Trump has already failed the exam.

When Trump signed the FIRST STEP Act into law in December, there was disagreement on the merits of the provisions that lowered mandatory minimum sentences and included reentry and educational programming at the federal Bureau of Prisons.

The above excerpt was originally published in The Hill. Click here to view the full article.

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Ed Chung

Senior Fellow