Virginia Lawmaker Introduces Bill To Reform Prison Sentencing | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Virginia Lawmaker Introduces Bill To Reform Prison Sentencing

A Virginia lawmaker is trying to tackle the problem of overcrowding in prisons.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/moosharella/7659465944/
A Virginia lawmaker is trying to tackle the problem of overcrowding in prisons.

Virginia Democratic Rep. Bobby Scott introduced legislation to reform prison sentencing. In the past three decades, the number of federal prisoners has shot up 500 percent. About half of those inmates are locked up for drug charges. Congress mandates a minimum sentence that judges are obligated to follow, which Scott would like to change. He argues judges need more flexibility, which he says could save around $1 billion dollars.

"I think there's growing support to eliminate the mandatory minimums and allow judges to impose sentences that make sense, not those that are so absurd under the circumstances that they violate common sense," he says.

The legislation is cosponsored by Republican Raul Labrador of Idaho. A bipartisan group of senators are also trying to tackle sentencing reform in the upper chamber, but no votes have been scheduled on either proposal.

NPR

No Small Feat: The NBA's Shortest Player Never Gave Up

At 5 foot 3, Muggsy Bogues holds the record as shortest player in NBA history. Criticism of his height started on the basketball courts of the Baltimore projects, and continued well into his career.
NPR

Tracing A Gin-Soaked Trail In London

Around the world, new gin distilleries are popping up like mushrooms after a rain. NPR traces the boom to its historic roots in London, which once had 250 distilleries within the city limits alone.
NPR

Ranting And Throwing Papers: An Angry Candidate Runs For Congress

State Rep. Mike Bost's rants on the Illinois House floor are the stuff viral dreams are made of. Bost says he has good reason to be upset, and wants voters to share his anger.
NPR

Israel's Solar-Powered 'Trees': For Smartphones And Community

The man-made trees are designed to create a public space where people can gather and re-charge a battery — their own and their smartphone's.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.