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The Latest on the Smarter Sentencing Act

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CQ Roll Call published an article yesterday about the Smarter Sentencing Act, now somewhere in limbo in the Senate.  The CQ piece is behind a paywall, but I have attempted  to reproduce it after the break.  It does a balanced and informative job of describing where things stand, including a note on what I view as something of a generational divide.  (I'm quoted in the piece).

On SL&P, Doug Berman says this:

I would put a slightly different spin than Bill Otis on the notable fact that the "average age of the Republicans who voted for the [SSA] in committee earlier this year was 45 [while the] average age of the Republicans who opposed it was 69." I would say that supporters of the bill understand that new political and legal realities may call for changing laws passed decades ago, whereas opponents of the bill see little need to update these sentencing laws for modern times.

I'm not sure what "new" legal and political realities Doug has in mind.  Last I looked, when you needle yourself with too much heroin, you're still dead; when a thug belts you to grab your purse, you still have a knot on your head and no purse; and when Mr. Nicey rapes your eight year-old, you still have a defiled little girl to try to help.

I do understand, however, that, in a sense, we have "new political and legal realities": A far-left Attorney General up to his eyeballs in race-huckstering with his buddy Al Sharpton; a Sentencing Commission whose majority is now effectively owned by the defense bar; and a bunch of judges newly at ease in snickering at crime victims.

And I don't think SSA backers want to embrace any "new realities." They simply want to repeat the disastrous mistakes of the past.



CQ NEWS May 23, 2014 - 11:07 a.m.

Sentencing Debate Reveals Divide Among Republicans

By John Gramlich, CQ Roll Call


A Senate proposal to cut mandatory minimum drug sentences in half has exposed a rift between senior, establishment Republicans who stress their law-and-order credentials and junior, more libertarian-minded members of the party who want to shrink the federal role in incarceration.

Sponsored by Sens. Richard J. Durbin, D-Ill., and Mike Lee, R-Utah, the bill (S 1410) is seen as a candidate for floor action following the Memorial Day recess after being approved by the Judiciary Committee, 13-5, in January. But the measure's prospects are uncertain, with differences among Republicans becoming increasingly apparent.

The bill's six GOP cosponsors include five first-term senators: Lee, Jeff Flake of Arizona, Rand Paul of Kentucky, Ted Cruz of Texas and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin.

Several of those lawmakers have strong tea party support and view the proposal through a libertarian lens. They cast it as a way to cut taxpayer spending on prisons while preserving individual liberties by doing away with tough penalties for low-level, nonviolent drug offenders.

By contrast, the bill's chief Republican opponents are a trio of establishment Republicans who have long pointed to their "tough on crime" bona fides. They are Majority Whip John Cornyn of Texas, a former state attorney general and judge; Jeff Sessions of Alabama, a former federal prosecutor, and Charles E. Grassley of Iowa, the Judiciary Committee's ranking member and arguably the Senate's staunchest defender of mandatory minimum penalties.

Cornyn, Sessions and Grassley circulated a Dear Colleague letter earlier this month in which they accused the bill's supporters of making a "highly misleading" argument that the plan would only cut sentences for low-level, nonviolent drug offenders. In fact, they wrote, it "would benefit some of the most serious and dangerous offenders in the federal system."

Beyond the philosophical disagreement, there also appears to be a generational split among Republicans when it comes to sentencing, said William G. Otis, a law professor at Georgetown University and former special counsel to President George H.W. Bush.

The average age of the Republicans who voted for the bill in committee earlier this year was 45, as Slate magazine noted in February. The average age of the Republicans who opposed it was 69.

Otis, who opposes the bill, said older Republican senators may be basing their views of the legislation on their personal recollections of the national crime wave that led to tougher criminal sentencing laws.

"For those of us that age, we remember what it was like, because we grew up in the '60s and '70s and the experience of the crime wave of those two decades is vivid," Otis said. "My generation remembers that. Rand Paul's generation, Jeff Flake's generation and Mike Lee's generation does not."

Home-State Splits

The intra-party split even has resulted in three sets of Republican senators from the same state taking different positions on the bill. Cruz and Lee are both at odds with their senior senators and fellow Judiciary Committee GOP members, Cornyn and Orrin G. Hatch.

Paul, who is perhaps the Senate's most prominent Republican supporter of shortening criminal sentences, so far has been unable to persuade Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., to back the plan.

A spokesman for McConnell did not respond to inquiries about the senator's position. But political experts in Kentucky said they would not be surprised if the minority leader came out in opposition to the bill, despite outspoken support for it from his junior senator.

Laurie A. Rhodebeck, a political science professor at the University of Louisville, said the two senators likely have different constituencies in mind. She noted that Paul may have higher political ambitions and has sought to broaden the appeal of the Republican Party by reaching out to minorities, who often face long criminal sentences for drug crimes.

"The way I see the big picture is that Rand Paul seems to be speaking to a national audience right now, rather than a Kentucky audience," Rhodebeck said. "I assume that's in keeping with his possible interest in running for the GOP nomination in 2016."

For McConnell - who has just kicked off a high-profile reelection campaign against Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes - there may be little political upside to calling attention to the sentencing bill, Rhodebeck said, noting that it has not drawn widespread attention in Kentucky.

"If (Grimes) not going to push the issue, then McConnell has no reason to say anything," she said.

Outside Advocates Divided

To be sure, Democrats may not be united within their own ranks on the bill. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., both have expressed reservations about it, even though they agreed to advance the measure to the full Senate.

GOP support for the proposal, meanwhile, is not limited only to first-term senators who are identified with the tea party. Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., is the sixth GOP cosponsor of the bill and has served in the Senate since 2005.

But the Republican split could be a consequential factor in whether the proposal reaches the floor in an election year in which control of the Senate is at stake. Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., has indicated he would like to bring up the proposal, but Durbin has suggested that there may be complications in rounding up the votes for passage.

A divide among outside conservative advocates may be among the complications.

At a forum this week of conservatives in favor of overhauling the nation's criminal justice policies, prominent figures including former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., and former National Rifle Association President David Keene made the case for a less punitive approach.

Keene said he "absolutely" supports the Senate bill and said he believes it has a strong chance of passing.

While Gingrich told CQ Roll Call he was not familiar with the details of the bill, he spoke in broad terms about the need for a more compassionate criminal justice system.

"Once you decide that everybody in prison is also an American, then you've got to really reach into your heart and ask, 'Is this the best we can do?'" Gingrich said. He added that the amount of money that taxpayers spend on incarceration "really is so stupid."

But a group of prominent former federal prosecutors, including two former Republican attorneys general, wrote to Reid and McConnell earlier this month to urge them not to bring the sentencing bill to the floor. Like Grassley and the other Senate Republicans, they warned it would threaten public safety.

George J. Terwilliger III, a former deputy attorney general under President Ronald Reagan and acting attorney general under President George H.W. Bush, said in an interview that he is not persuaded by the argument that mandatory minimum sentences should be scaled back as a way to save money that is currently used to lock up low-level criminals.

"I think that argument frankly just doesn't hold water," he said. "Taxpayer money is not being used to imprison, in the federal system, low-level drug traffickers. All you have to do is look with some degree of objectivity at what the federal docket is for drug crimes and it will be clear that the people that are being investigated and prosecuted are serious people."

Of the split in conservative thinking on the sentencing bill, Terwilliger said, "I guess it's living proof that the philosophical spectrum might be a circle, and if you go all the way around, the ends meet."

13 Comments

Bill, as you surely know, the SSA concerns only federal drug offenses, so I do not understand why you reference "when a thug belts you to grab your purse" or "when Mr. Nicey rapes your eight year-old." Dare I suggest that you are eager to talk about violent crime because you recognize how hard it is to defense the status quo federal approach to drug crimes?

As for the new political and legal realities concerning drug crimes, I largely had in mind all the modern polling showing that "the public expresses increasingly positive views of the move away from mandatory sentences for non-violent drug crimes. By nearly two-to-one (63% to 32%), more say it is a good thing than a bad thing that some states have moved away from mandatory sentences for non-violent drug offenders." http://www.people-press.org/2014/04/02/americas-new-drug-policy-landscape/. Older politicians remember when tough and tougher on drug crimes was the key to winning elections, younger folks understand that the public has come to see the war on drugs as a relative failure AND this is especially the view among younger and minority voters (whom the GOP needs to reach if it hopes to reverse its failure to win the national popular vote in 5 out of the last 6 Prez elections).

On the legal front, I have in mind the reality that federal drug sentences even for relatively low-level and non-violent offenses remain consistently (and I think problematically) longer that most sentences for "when a thug belts you to grab your purse" or "when Mr. Nicey rapes your eight year-old." In other words, I think younger GOP politicians see that the modern political/legal calls for focusing federal priorities and monies on violent crimes, not on drug offenses.

Last but not least, there is a broad modern political/legal view that big federal government does not do too many things very well (see, e.g., VA scandal, war in Iraq, roll-out of Obamacare), and the drug war is seen as part of that equation. Indeed, the recent surge in heroin problems despite no change int he already tough federal drug laws highlights that tough drugs laws seem most ineffective in dealing with these problems.

I know you think the federal drug war has been a huge success, but then how do you explain the modern surge in heroin problems?

The public is mislead when drug crimes are blithely described as "non-violent." The large majority of dealers possess or have access to weapons to protect their stash. As is common,when the firearm charge is dismissed as part of a plea bargain-bingo-we have the much discussed "non-violent" drug offender.
Further, convictions for prior firearm violations do not enter into the discussion in the polyannish world of "non-violent" drug offenders.

Suffice it to say, the true number of "non-violent" drug offenders is miniscule and public safety will be compromised if this charade succeeds.

Fair concerns, mjs, though I think another reason to get rid of MMs absent proof of violence. If the Feds can show a weapon was involved, they get another 5 years. So we already have MMs for weapon involvement, and thus can lower MMs for small level drug dealing.

Doug --

"Dare I suggest that you are eager to talk about violent crime because you recognize how hard it is to defense the status quo federal approach to drug crimes?"

Well, gosh, you can dare what you like, it being a free country. Actually, however, I talk about violent crime because of how eager your side is to dismiss and excuse it (only "urban survival syndrome," dontcha know). Besides, that sexy eight year-old brought it on herself, right?

I also talk about it because it's relevant to the House hearing this week before the Federal Criminal Law Task Force, which is not at all limited to drug crimes, and is instead an overview of the role of criminal punishment.

As to whether it's hard for little, 'ole me to defend the current approach to drug crimes, I have done so in USA Today, US News & World Report, CQ Roll Call, the NYT and personally before Congress, so I guess I don't find it all that hard.

As for your poll, I wasn't born yesterday. I know -- just as you do -- that the wording of the question is everything. Wanna try this one: "Over the last 20 years, crime is down by half, and almost everyone agrees that part of the decline is because we imprison more people for longer. Do you support keeping that system, or do you think we should go back toward a system where judges had more leeway and crime was up?"

The question you use reminds me of the old standby from abolitionists: "Do you support the death penalty, or would you prefer life imprisonment with restitution and absolutely no possibility of parole?" They ask this knowing (but never saying) that there will be actual restitution in an infinitesimal number of cases, and that the legislature can provide parole any time it likes -- and in some instances, e.g., California, has.

"Older politicians remember when tough and tougher on drug crimes was the key to winning elections..."

Just so! Ronald Reagan, that old coot, was the Devil!! And I see you're up to your old, tiresome and unworthy trick of suggesting that the ONLY reason a person could disagree with the Received Wisdom of Academia is crass political considerations.

My goodness.

I see this more and more on the Left. There is no such thing as principled or reasonable disagreement. There is only racism and the corruption of age.

Liberals didn't used to be like that, but that was then.

"...younger folks understand that the public has come to see the war on drugs as a relative failure AND this is especially the view among younger and minority voters (whom the GOP needs to reach if it hopes to reverse its failure to win the national popular vote in 5 out of the last 6 Prez elections)."

Is the war on murder also a failure? Must be, because we have even more murders than heroin overdose deaths.

Hey, well, look, gosh, since we've still got these thousands and thousands of murders AFTER ALL THESE YEARS of doing murder arrests and prosecutions, obviously we should just give up and accept that murder is part of life, so, hey, let's go out for a cup of coffee.

Oh course, that's not the only way to look at it. My father talked to me about this. His view was that, if you have a fight worth winning, but it's long and tough, you have two choices. You can give up, or you can fight harder.

I think I'll stick with my father's take on it, if that's OK.

And as to the views of young and minority voters: You're much better as a legal strategist than a political one. The key for the Republicans -- who now hold more state legislative seats across the country than they have for decades, and more than the Democrats -- is to focus on women (who'd like to be able to protect themselves rather than have their guns taken away, and who are more opposed to drug use than men); Orientals (a group of growing influence, prosperity and traditional values); and Hispanics (can you say Rubio/Martinez in '16?).

But of course the big news here is that, in the paragraph immediately following the one in which you chided Republicans as having supported tough-on-crime measures only for crass political reasons, you now turn on a dime and say they should back easy-on-drugs measures because of -- get this -- the modern version of crass political reasons!!!

Far out! The objection wasn't to politics after all. The objection was strictly tactical -- that Republicans have the political mechanics wrong.

OK. We'll see. Care to offer any bets on who gains and who loses seats in Congress this November?

"I think younger GOP politicians see that the modern political/legal calls for focusing federal priorities and monies on violent crimes, not on drug offenses."

Again, I wasn't born yesterday. Your allies like Michael Tonry want to START with drug offenses, sure, but they have zero intention of stopping there, as you can't help knowing. They think that the whole country is racist, classist, excessively punitive AND THE WHOLE BALL OF WAX. All the talk about drug sentencing is just the camel's nose of a far more radical attack on criminal sentencing generally. It's a foolish person who lets in the camel's nose.

That, and as mjs wisely notes, "The public is mislead when drug crimes are blithely described as 'non-violent.' The large majority of dealers possess or have access to weapons to protect their stash...the true number of "non-violent" drug offenders is miniscule and public safety will be compromised if this charade succeeds."

Then you note: "Last but not least, there is a broad modern political/legal view that big federal government does not do too many things very well (see, e.g., VA scandal, war in Iraq, roll-out of Obamacare), and the drug war is seen as part of that equation."

I dearly wish you could get your many influential friends in the Democratic Party to understand that their gargantuan entitlement programs are indeed an expensive failure. Have you been talking to them about that?

Right. Didn't think so.

As I've said many times, and as you know but keeping ignoring -- just to annoy me, I have to guess at this stage -- it's beyond foolhardy to characterize federal anti-drug efforts as a part of the Big Government that is pulling the country down the insolvency rathole. You could abolish DOJ tomorrow -- all of it -- and it would have zero impact on federal spending and borrowing. So it's past time to quit with the "Big Government" gig against our efforts to reduce the misery and death drugs bring about. If you had any actual heartburn about Big Government, you'd want to pare back government spending the only place in can be done with any consequence. I must have missed the place where you've been doing that.

"I know you think the federal drug war has been a huge success, but then how do you explain the modern surge in heroin problems?"

One of the things that makes having a serious conversation less and less possible is your throwing bombshells like, "I know you think the federal drug war has been a huge success..."

I think it has had some notable successes, you bet, which you are not about to admit. I also think there is much to be done, and it doesn't get any easier when prominent law professors keep telling us that drugs are either good (ya know, medicine), or, even if they're bad, that young, foolish and misled people should be left to their own dreadful fate while the rest of us snicker. A different message from that would help in taming the perils of drug use.

As to the recent surge in heroin use, why don't you take that up with Eric Holder who is, after all, in charge of the federal effort. On the other hand, when his boss pooh-poohs drug use (and people don't make the distinctions among drugs that you or I do), that's not helping a lot.

Quite the screed, Bill, with lots of bluster and not all that much content for me to respond to. But, to be clear so I understand better your opposition to the SSA, are you saying you are most worried principally about reducing sentences for violent crime, so that is why you are against any reduction in federal drug crimes? Are you saying that federal investments in the dug war (though less than in other wars and less than entitlements) have been relatively effective and that is why they should be sustained at current levels (and perhaps increased).

I share your concerns about violent crimes, and I fear that misusing our resources on drug crimes hurts efforts to continue the positive downward trend in violent crime rates. I surmise you take a different view, but I am eager to understand if it is violent crime that really concerns you at base, or if you think someone who peddles an ounce of crack to feed their habit should get 5 year minimum in prison.

Doug --

"I share your concerns about violent crimes, and I fear that misusing our resources on drug crimes hurts efforts to continue the positive downward trend in violent crime rates."

Why on earth would you fear that? A mountain of evidence is to the EXACT contrary. As we have used more and more resources on imprisoning drug criminals, violent crime has plummeted. By contrast, in days of yore, when we used relatively quite few resources fighting drugs, violent crime skyrocketed.

Reader mjs put his finger part of the reason for this, but whatever the reason, it's simply beyond rational denial that spending more fighting drugs has NOT handicapped efforts to fight violent crime. To my knowledge, never in the 225-year history of this country has violent crime fallen as precipitously as it has as over the last generation -- at precisely the time more and more offenders, for drugs and other crimes, have been sent to jail.

And please understand, Bill,I do not think political concerns are crass. They are both justified and a necessity is a well functioning democracy. That is why it was justified and wise for so many Ds to be extra tough in the 80s and 90s, and why I think it is justified and wise for many GOP govs and federal officials to be urging reforms to the drug war circa 2010s.

Though I know folks who want to end all state and federal drug war spending, I am more interested to see is we could spend our dollars more wisely. I think the SSA -- like the FSA before it --- would be a small move in the right direction. Notably, so too it seems does many GOP folks under 60. Not so for the older crowd. A very legitimate ground for discussion and debate, though the relation to spending on violent crime or entitlements ( at the federal or state level) strikes me as a distraction on this front. You may think this is all connected, but I thought the focal point here was pro/con on the SSA.

Bill, in recent years, we have spent considerably less at the state level fighting drugs, and violent crime has continued to go down. And, of course, violent crime dropped after the end of alcohol Prohibition.

in contrast, violent crime actually went way up during alcohol Prohibition AND during the first decade of the modern federal drug war (roughly from 1984 to 1993). Then, around the time the Clinton Administration started backing off the war a bit (pushing, inter alia, the Safety Valve Act that the SSA wants to expand), violent crime started to decline. That decline has continued through the Booker era and the passage of the FSA, both of which lowered or loosened the severity of federal sentences used in the drug war.

So, though I am only claiming a correlation, not strict causation, in "days of yore" when we first ramped up tough federal sentencing for drug crimes, violent crime spiked, and it started coming down when we started backing off a bit. And I hope backing off a little bit more via the SSA will continue these positive developments.

Though you want to lampoon some advocacy for reform, the simple reality is that the SSA is not a return to the 1950s, but simply a relatively minor adjustment to federal drug sentencing. Like many younger GOP reps, I think that it would be a positive adjustment. Like many older GOP reps, you disagree.

In the end, it seems that we both care about violent crime and we have distinct views about how best to combat it.

"new political and legal realities" = lowest crime rate in decades.

What about the war on cancer? We have been fighting cancer for years, but people are still dying from it at alarmingly high rates. I guess we should stop fighting cancer, too. How about the war on poverty? We have been fighting poverty for decades, but the poverty rate is still very high. I guess we should stop that fight, too---we have spent way more money fighting poverty than we have spent on the war on drugs.

We fight things because they are bad. We don't stop fighting bad things simply because the fight is hard or because we haven't won.

Final comment: does Doug B. live in a neighborhood full of drug dealers? I am guessing he doesn't. Indeed, I am guessing he lives in a very nice community with almost no crime. I wonder what he would do if his next door neighbor decided to start selling crack or cooking meth. Would he shrug his shoulders and say: "Oh, look honey the nice non-violent man next door has decided to turn his house into a drug den. I have really enjoyed the constant stream of prostitutes and addicts standing in our yard." I can't help but wonder whether folks like Doug B. would view drug crime differently if they actually lived it as opposed to sitting in their gated communities reading books about it. It is easy to say drug crime is non-violent and not a big deal when it is destroying somebody else's neighborhood.


Doug B.,

How can you keep saying the drug war is a total failure when research shows that crack cocaine use "is only a fraction of what it was in the 1980s and 1990s when it devastated inner-city neighborhoods?" (See http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Survey-finds-cocaine-use-down-sharply-in-U-S-2413684.php).

How can you keep saying the drug war is a total failure when research shows that "American drug use has already dropped by one-third since its peak in the 1970s. Cocaine use has declined 40 percent, and methamphetamine use by 50 percent...." (See http://www.drugfree.org/join-together/u-s-cocaine-meth-use-on-the-decline-kerlikowske-tells-international-commission/).

I am not nearly as smart as you, but it seems like there is at least a credible argument to be made that we are succeeding in our fight against drugs.

Yahoo, I do not think the drug war "is a total failure," just as I do not think the war on cancer or the war on poverty is a total failure. But, to continue your themes, if we learned that a certain type of welfare benefit created a disincentive for people to work their way out of poverty, we might wisely seek to reform that part of the war on poverty. (I bring up that example because that is a simplistic way to describe how we "improved" the war on poverty in the 1990s.)

As I said before, I want to fight the drug war smarter, and states have discovered that investing more in treatment over incarceration is a better battlefield strategy. That is largely what the SSA seeks to foster: reducing the mandated level of incarceration for lower-level drug offenders.

Finally, if/when we heard from the victims of drug crimes saying they want harsh sentences for those in their neighborhood, I would have a distinct view. But, at least so far, we hear only older senators and law enforcement officials (i.e., the generals who surely live in nice communities) saying lets keep fighting this war. Those living in war ravaged communities have been seemingly leading the call for reform.

Finally, though I agree bad people can do bad things with drugs, the same can be said about guns and cars and knives and all sorts of other stuff. But drugs do not kill/hurt people, people kill/hurt people. The demonization of drugs has always seemed to me very similar to the demonization of guns: an effort to blame a thing for human misbehavior. And, sensibly in my view, the response to another wave of mass shooting is not an effort to fight a war on guns harder but smarter. And I think the SSA has us fighting the war on drugs smarter. Obviously others have a different view, but I appreciate this space for this discussion.

(One last point: though statistics reveal that illegal drug use is down for some drugs, it is up for others. And, arguably more critical, overall drug use is way up largely thanks to big Pharma (with well paid docs) being now the major pushers. Fortunately, they all at least pay some taxes on their drug dealing profits.)

Doug B.,

I think we can all agree that crack cocaine is the drug that has been fought the hardest over the years. And, I think the statistics are clear that crack cocaine use has been declining rapidly. Do you think that locking up crack dealers for a long time has had nothing to do with the sharp decline in crack use? Is the crack cocaine decline simply a coincidence?

Additionally, my personal experience has been that good, law-abiding people, who live in drug-riddled neighborhoods want the drug dealers locked up. They are the ones calling the police hotlines to report dealers, they are the ones calling the city council president and demanding increased police patrols. I have also heard the local justice system described as "catch and release" by community leaders who are fed up with drug dealers being arrested one day, out on bond the next, and back to selling drugs within the week.

To illustrate my point, I recently saw an article about a series of drug arrests in a small community that has seen a huge increase in drug crime. There were hundreds of comments on the article from community members, almost all of them positive. Here is a sampling of what the community members had to say: "Great job! This crap is killing our kids." "Now if the judges do their jobs and send them all to prison and not just slap them on the wrist and set them free." "It's about Time" "Great job! "Glad to see action!" "Thanks for getting that crap of the street along with the punks bringing it in."

Good points, again, Yahoo, though the relationship between long terms of incarceration (especially at the federal level) and drug use and abuse is full of challenging questions. I suspect crack use/abuse spiked in the 1980s due to a confluence of many factors (just as meth use spiked in the 1990s/2000s and heroin use is spiking now), and I do think an extreme criminal justice response was rational (if not wise) response to this problem in that era. But now, 30 years later, we can (and have through the FSA) redeploy our drug war resources to go after other bigger modern problems. Again, that is what I think and hope the SSA represents: a redeployment of drug war resources to fight more efficiently and effectively in this battle arena.

Your anecdotes are an excellent example of the ability (and need) for a kind of "hot spot" police response to new problems in new areas. The MMs that the SSA looks to modify are examples of old responses to old problems that might still work to some degree but also might not now be the most sensible allocation of our fighting resources.

Notably, voices as diverse as Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, Grover Norquist, Eric Holder and Pat Leahy all share my view that the SSA (like the FSA which came before it) would be a worthwhile modification of our drug war fighting strategy. I am eager to give it a try. I surmise you and Bill and others are not. Such are the healthy terms of debate in a democracy, and whether a majority of people hope for or fear change in this arena will determine which approach is adopted in the coming years.

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