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tv   Incarceration Criminal Justice System  CSPAN  March 1, 2018 2:05pm-2:46pm EST

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>> and then on sunday at 2:00 p.m. on american history tv, a v visit to the citizen pottawatomie nation cultural n center, and hear about the people, and the forced removal of the native land into indian territory. >> this is the particular section of the museum, we highlight one particular removal which is what we refer to as the trail of death. it happened the same years of the cherokee trail of tears and we left our homelands within a few days of each other. this is a particularly heartbreaking and gut-wrenching removal. our ancestors who were moved on this particular removal were ones who had refused to negotiate with the federal government. so, agents, called a treaty council and asked the people to meet at monomonies village in what is today, twin lakes, indiana.
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and so our people had to walk from there to a new reservation in kansas. >> make sure that you join us four c-span's cities tours. and also on sunday at c-span3 as we work with the cable affiliates as we explore america. "the atlantic" hosted a series of discussions about our incarnation and criminal justice system. criminal experts and former inmates talked about mandatory minimum sentences, rehabilitation, juvenile justice and the female population. this is about three hours. [ applause ] >> thank you, thank you. i would like to start off with a poem. it is called "the greatest about
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me. " ""southeast d.c. where the curtains are bed sheets, bad examples with good examples, lacks of glamour, that they never mention. the pain, trauma and a jail sentence. i was a part of a life where no one gets to win. the visions of my youth is where it all began. a ladder roams our label right. so how was i supposed to know i was wrong? never positive just gangster songs. i was strung along. praised for being the boldest, big and bad. that's right, being mad. but how could you tell me that i'm super young and i need proper guidance? no one hears your cries to be taught the right things as they call it. so i did what was wrong. but i thought it was right. i went to prison singing the same song as the ones before me, baited in by the foolery, money and jewelry. it all started in greater southeast. that's the end of my poem. and now i'm basically is a little insight on what led to my incarceration as a juvenile.
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i was incarcerated at a very young age, and i served five years in federal prison. it helped me discover who i am, and it was kind of therapeutic to me. it was like a release when i felt a certain emotion or whatever, i isolated myself and just write or read, you know. and that helped me say being a great poet ambassador for free minds book club. it's a nonprofit in washington, d.c. and i start off as once i came home, i started off as apprentice to the program and now work full-time in the office. and i go from school to school. if you're aware of the d.c. area, i go to school like cesar chavez and truesdale, things of that nature. if not, it is elementary schools if you are not from the d.c.
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area. i go to outreaches talking to kids, trying to get them to understand that there is a better way, you know. don't listen and let what you see in your everyday life influence you to do the wrong, wrong things. that's basically what i do on my day-to-day life. i made my mistakes as a young person, but helping and being a part of the solution to, you know decrease -- [ applause ] >> thank you. >> thank you. thank you very much. >> thank you so much, james allen. that poem that james just read was written just for all of you here today, and we thought that it would be meaningful to begin the day with poetry capturing the experience of a young man from southeast behind bars and beyond. so thank you, thank you. good morning and welcome, everybody. i'm margaret low.
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i'm president of atlantic live, which is the events division of "the atlantic" magazine. and we bring people together to talk about some of the weightiest issues of our time. and we think the conversation this morning about criminal justice certainly fits that bill. this morning's gathering is the third in our defining justice series. we kicked off in oklahoma last fall in oklahoma city. we were looking at why oklahoma sends more women to prison at a higher rate than any other state in the country. after that, we were in l.a. to consider how media and entertainment influence how we think about incarceration. and today, the last in our three-part series, we're in washington, and we're going to explore the policy landscape and also hear about conditions of confinement affect women and children involved with the system. before we get rolling, i do want to thank google. they made today's event and the defining justice series possible. thank you so much to google for that. [ applause ] i have a few very basic practical notes before we get
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started. please silence your cell phones. but as we like to say, don't put them away because we'd love you to join the conversation on twitter. we are at atlantic live. the hash tag is defining justice. after each session, we're going to make sure we have time for your questions. we will begin this morning with senator mike lee. he is a republican from utah. he serves on the senate judiciary committee and is a co-sponsor of the sentencing and corrections reform act. among other things, that act would roll back mandatory minimum sentences and require educational and therapeutic sentences in federal prisons. please welcome senator lee. he is here. welcome, senator. and he is here with my colleague, atlantic executive editor matt thompson. take it away, gentlemen. >> thank you very much. thank you, margaret. thank you, senator lee for joining us this morning, and
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thanks to all of you. senator, your last book, "our lost constitution" was an argument that america has created a large governmental bureaucracy that has in effect taken over some of the law making functions that were in america's original design reserved to congress. and that shunted aside in so doing the constitutional protections for americans, the constitutional limits on the government's power. as we speak, one in four people that is imprisoned around the world is imprisoned in the u.s. what is the constitutional failure do you think? does that reflect the constitutional failure? does that reflect the misunderstanding of what the constitution says the government is supposed to do? and if so, what is the misunderstanding? what was the failure there?
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>> i think there is an argument to be made that is one of many manifestations of our drift away from some of the fundamental protections in constitution, what i call the structural protections. the vertical protection we call federalism that says most of the government should remain with the states and close to the people where it can be turned around and where it can reflect local preferences. and then the horizontal protection, what we call separation of powers that says we're going to have one branch, congress that makes the laws. another branch headed by the president to enforce the laws. the third branch headed by the supreme court that interprets the laws. when each function of government is allowed to perform only within its design sphere, you have government more account to believe the people. we have drifted from that. it's maybe more of an attenuated connection, especially given that we've got a lot more people incarcerated under state authority than federal authority. but i think we have a whole lot more people incarcerated under
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federal authority than we should. our federal prison population alone has increased about 900% since the early 1980s. this does not in my opinion reflect a 900% increase in the crime rate. it instead reflects a few trends in the law that i find disturbing. the overcriminalization of the law in this country, the overfederalization of criminal law, and the excessive use of often excessive minimum mandatory penalties within the system. >> you have been and part of the reasons you joined us here this morning is you have been an active voice on especially federal sentencing reform. you co-sponsored a bill by senator chuck grassley to address federal sentencing reform, to try to reduce some of the mandatory minimums that federal prosecutors can apply in sentencing. now, this has been an area that for the past few years has seemed to be moving towards a rare instance of bipartisan consensus. and your bill reflects that. within the senate judiciary committee, your sentencing bill
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drew votes from both democratic committee members and republican committee members. however, there were a few holdouts, including yours and your colleague from utah senator orrin hatch. what was -- what is the disagreement? what was the disagreement within the committee? what were the problems? why? who on earth at this moment is trying to keep mandatory minimums as having as much as a role in the system as they do and why? >> without speaking for any one colleague, i usually try to avoid being anyone else's spokesman. >> so senatorial. >> but i can speak certainly in generalities about those in my party who express opposition. one of the things i hear from my republican colleagues is i don't believe we have an overincarceration problem.
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some of them will go so far to say if anything we have an underincarceration problem. i don't find that persuasive at all. >> they say he we should have one in three prisoners? >> perhaps. or maybe all of us should be in there in a sense. i don't know. not all of them feel that way. others will take a more nuanced approach and say i could support this, but i want additional reforms in there. if you could throw in mens rea reform, requiring a certain level of intent as a federal threshold matter on federal criminal offenses. and i understand that. my response to that one is this doesn't deal with substantive offenses as much as it deals with the terms of sentencing and incarceration. that's more appropriate to address elsewhere. this has been an issue that has been building over time. when i first got to the senate after being elected in 2010, i decided i wanted to work on this. it was difficult thing to start initially. i started looking for allies on the judiciary committee. and i got together with dick durbin. dick durbin is a liberal democrat from illinois.
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i've never been described as a liberal democrat or as democrat for that matter. he and i see eye to eye on this issue and the need for reform. and so we put together something called the smarter sentencing act. and that got a little support. and we decided we wanted to expand it. we got together with chairman grassley. and ironed out a series of compromises and put together the sentencing reform and corrections act. that passed out of the judiciary committee by a bipartisan super majority vote of 16-5 just two weeks ago. and so we're making progress on this. and this could be a big bipartisan win if we would just bring to it the senate floor. >> yes. and there is one key -- there are a few key actors in addition to some of the holdouts in the senate committee. it passed with flying colors and passed the committee and has many proponents in the broader senate.
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but the white house has had an uncertain posture on this bill. and i'm curious if you could take us for a moment into a room that many of us don't get to be in for a while. you spent some time with the white house, with attorney general jeff sessions who described this bill itself as a grave mistake. what's the flavor of that disagreement? why -- what has the cooperation with what messages are you getting from the white house and what cooperation do you expect looking forward on these issues? >> so far we've had enthusiasm expressed from the white house on title 2 of the sentencing reform and corrections act and not title 1. let me explain what that means. title one deals with sentencing reform and makes some necessary adjustments to some of our minimum mandatory sentencing laws. title 2 deals with some reform programs, what we call the back end reform or reentry reform, helping to reform current federal inmates for their reintroduction into society so that they're ready to go. they've got some job skills, and
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they're less likely to recidivate after they get out. the white house has been more warm to title 2 than to title 1. i still hold out hope because i still think this is good policy. and i think it's very difficult to argue against either title 1 or title 2. i think they're best put forward together. >> and part of that hope, as i understand it as an outsider rests somewhat on within the white house. jared kushner, the senior white house adviser has made sentencing reform among his bailiwicks. and i hear that as of last night john kelly has cleared aside some part of his foreign policy portfolio. so he has more time perhaps to apply to criminal justice. how has it been -- what has mr. kushner's engagement on the issue been from your perspective? >> jared has a lot of very refreshing ideas. he's also got a refreshing amount of intellectual
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curiosity. he likes to learn about issues like this. and he asks a lot of good questions. he has a lot of enthusiasm as a reformer. so i've appreciated the opportunity to work with him. >> so i want to turn for a moment to the policy itself, to sentencing reform as one aspect of the broad problem i think it's fair to say of incarceration in the u.s. and its spread. some would say that sentencing reform, and especially federal sentencing reform is kind of nibbling around the edges of the scale of the problem, that because relatively -- a relatively small percentage of those under correctional observation in the u.s. are federal prisoners, now this is where the matter of women is most directly affected, of course.
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half of drug offenders that are imprisoned at the federal level are women. but it's still a small number being imprisoned in the country overall. most are in state and local prisons. so what would you say to the argument that federal sentencing reform is kind of small ball? >> it's a little bit like saying -- i don't want to take the analogy too far, but if you look it up, a mile-long train. the engine of the train is a very small train, but it's what's driving the train. in some respects, the federal system might be driving the states. some of the states will look to federal law as a model in some instances. in other instances, you'll actually see state prosecutors or local prosecutors interacting
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with their federal counterparts and deciding which entity will take a prosecution in a particular instance, depending on which one is likely to produce a longer sentence. it might be one of the reasons we've seen such an uptick in the federal prison population in recent decade series because that sort of thing has been happening. they see a longer sentence likely at the end of federal prosecution, the case is likely going to go federal. so, yeah, even though this is a small segment of the overall incarcerated population in the united states, it is an important population. most importantly for my purposes as a federal lawmaker, it's the area that i'm supposed to focus on. so i'm going to try to reform this one, hoping and expecting and so far frankly seeing that as we do this, we interest more legislative bodies in states to undertake similar reforms. >> is there a risk in the other direction that if the -- if you do achieve a bipartisan success, legislation passes on sentencing reform, that it in essence makes a broader set of policies on
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incarceration less possible down the line, that it limits the political will to come back to the subject and address some of the other areas that are where there might still be problems? >> perhaps if it backfired that might be the result. i don't think it's going to, though. i think if we were to pass the sentencing reform and corrections act, i think we would see some very favorable outcomes. that's why i'm very optimistic about the future for criminal justice reform. i think something like this passing is inevitable. i want to see it happen sooner rather than later. i would like to see us pass it this year. and i think we would see the fruits from that. i think they would be favorable and beneficial. and i think it would bring about more reform in this area that's needed. >> i want to turn for a moment to the matter of the public and public opinion. we are having this conversation at a moment where there is broad agreement among americans that
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the size of the american incarceration state has grown too large, and that we should explore alternatives to prison for some of society's ills that previously were construed as criminal. now this happens at a moment when crime in america, violent property crime, drug crime is at a decades low, still. every year we see a few headlines about potential spikes in some cities. but by and large, crime now in the u.s. is far lower than it was at the peak when several mandatory minimums and harsh sentencing guidelines were put in place. what if that picture changes? what if this goes the other way, like in the '80s we stand possibly on the precipice. we are amidst a huge drug epidemic again? there is an argument -- some are arguing that criminal penalties should be a solution to apply to
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that situation as well. what if law and order and tough on crime begins to get purchase in public opinion? do you think that these -- the successes so far in achieving bipartisan consensus in this are at risk? >> with a representative government, it is hard for me to see it going in that direction. i don't see the will among the american people, the desire among the american people to say, yes, we have got this problem and the answer is more cowbell, add more fuel to this very fire. a friend of mine used to say when you're holding a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail. and thing is grave danger in that when it comes to the criminal justice system. if we see the government is wielding only one tool to combat the problem, the problem being broadly defined as crime
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generally are or broadly defined as drug-related crimes, i think that we are going to cause problems. i think that we have caused problems to the extent that we have done that. i visited a place recently in salt lake city called the other side academy. it's modelled after a recovery home called delancey street that started out in san francisco and branched out and opened up another location in los angeles. they have had tremendous success with taking people who have served time, who have had problems with the law, and often pr problems with substances, and they work together and hold each other accountable and keep each other clean and off of the streets and focused on gaining job skills and on becoming contributing members of the community once again.
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they've had tremendous success. they've been in operation now -- they're in their third year in salt lake city. and so far they have had a 100% success rate. this is not a government operation. but in some instances, it's been used as an alternative to incarceration. there are some judges who have allowed people to go through this program rather than going and being incarcerated for a period of time. i think we need to look more at solutions like that if we really want to solve this problem. this is best understood as a human problem. and we have to examine not just the financial costs of lengthy mass incarceration, but also the human costs. the problems arise when somebody's son or daughter or mother or sister or aunt or uncle is put away behind bars not just for years, but for decades at a time. there is a significant human cost attached to that. and i think we're reaping some of that. and that's why we need to look to other tools. >> in a moment i'm going turn to the audience for a question. and first i wanted to ask about
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separate but related matter. i would be remiss given our moment and that we are still in the aftermath of the tragic shooting last week in parkland, florida, at marjory stoneman douglas school in florida, there is one path has been endorsed by the nra to fix an act that is intended essentially to strengthen some of the incentives around reporting gun purchases to the federal government. and it has a fair amount given that it is endorsed by the nra. it has a fair amount of support from across the aisle, as it were. but you don't support this measure. and tell me a little bit about your objection to it. >> i'm trying to reform it. i'm trying to fix it. i'm trying to fix. there is a fairly simple fix that i have drafted there are some others available out there. let me explain briefly what this does. the nics system is a system that
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alerts when someone is buying a gun that shouldn't be trying to buy a gun because they fit under one of the nine categories that are identified in usg-3, people who have been convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor crime or domestic violence are, dishonorably discharged from the military or one of the other nine categories. among those nine categories is some language put in there i believe by mistake by congress. someone who has been adjudicated a mental defective. the problem with that is it's not a thing. no one really knows what that is. and the concern there is that you could have among other people veterans who are returning with ptsd, somebody in the veterans affairs administration has identified them as having ptsd and given them assistance managing their affairs in order to help them with that. they could be deemed by a combination of action by the
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v.a. and a regulation put out by the atf to have been adjudicated a mental defective and therefore deprived of their rights. now that may seem like a simple problem to correct, but once you do that and a culture develops among veterans where they're afraid to get help upon their return, you could end up with some real problems. you do not want returning veterans refusing to get treatment or help from the v.a. simply because they fear that they might be stripped of their right to carry that which they've been asked to carry in defense of their country. i'm trying to fix that i think we can get to a fix on it. but it does need to be repaired. >> let me turn a question from the audience. right over there, i think. >> hi, senator. thank you for being here today. i have a question related to -- >> please quickly identify yourself. >> my name is anna and i work with the public defender service here in d.c. and i have a question actually related to what you just mentioned with mental
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disabilities. i know in the past year congress passed an act that allowed people that were severely mentally incapacitated to -- people that have other people, for example managing their benefits, that used to be a prohibition that you couldn't go and get a gun. but congress passed a law that allowed people like this to get a gun. i see your example about veterans and i understand that. but when we're facing a culture of mass shootings in the united states, how can we both address the very real mental health issues that exist while also making sure that people like that are not capable of owning and purchasing a weapon? >> yeah, yeah. it's a fair question. and first of all, thank you for what you do. public defenders perform such a valuable role in our society. and i appreciate what you do. >> i'm sure she'll remember that in the appropriations process. >> yes, yes.
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exactly. [ laughter ] i think it is important to make sure that people who should not have a gun don't get one, including people who have violent tendencies or propensities, people who are mentally insane, anyone who has been adjudicated, for instance, as unfit to stand trial, not guilty by reason of insanity, someone who has been committed to an insane asylum or has been deemed by a court of competent ju jurisdiction to be a harm to themselves or a harm to others. so that's what we're trying to tweak there is we want to make sure that there is a definition behind that rather than this broad term of "adjudicated as a mental incompetent." to conflate that with someone who is returning home having served in the armed forces with
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ptsd and who needs help managing their affairs, that is not the same as somebody who has truly been adjudicated as someone who is a harm to themselves or a harm to others. we've got to make sure there is due process in that. it's also helpful, i think, to rely on what a number of states have been using. and i think we need to examine our federal laws to figure out whether we should supplement federal law with what something like a number of states have adopted in the area of domestic violence restraining orders. when a close family member sees something in another person that they cause -- that causes them to believe that they could be a threat to someone else. they ought to be able to report them to the authorities. and at least for a period of time until they can get it worked out. have that person put on the list of people who are unable to
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acquire or possess firearms. >> senator lee, thank you for your answer. it's been -- >> thank you. >> a great start to our morning. and enjoy the rest. >> thank you. >> thank you, senator lee. and thank you, matt. connecticut governor dannel malloy has led the way on justice reform efforts in his state since he took office in 2011. before entering politics, he was a federal prosecutor. and during his tenure as governor, the state has ended the death penalty, changed the bail system, reduced sentences for drug possession, and made it easier for nonviolent offenders to apply for a pardon or for parole. i'm grateful that governor malloy got up i'm told by him at 4:00 a.m. this morning in hartford, connecticut to be here with thus morning in washington, d.c. thank you, governor, to talk to my great colleague, steve clemons, washington editor at large.
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>> hey, everybody, good morning. good morning. >> everyone. you know, i'm really grateful that all of you are here there are so many people here and in the other room. i know we have croissants for you. when we come to questions, ask them. you're putting in time here. let's make this fun and interesting for everybody. governor, thank you for joining us. isn't it kind of strange that you hear a senator from utah who might make a great candidate for the governor of connecticut. i mean you guys sound so much on the same page. >> not on the last part. >> i just want to ask you, though, we were talking in the green room about the hard choices you had to make as governor during your tenure. and i know you're leaving in january of this next year. you're giving up this position. and you have taken the state in some very interesting directions on sentence reform, on prison reform. and i mention the hard choices you were talking about. are any of them in this arena? >> i think the they think we've done in arena are relatively easy. because they're, you know, they're smart. they're based on science as opposed to perception.
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and we have learned in connecticut and elsewhere what works and what doesn't work. so i think this has been relatively easy to propose. you know, some of the proposals i've made haven't been enacted in my own state but actually have been enacted in other states, which is interesting. but no, the criminal justice reform is the smart thing. >> you know, i was reading a lot about you in the last couple of days. and one of the features that came out was your wife cathy. and in particular, there was this discussion of confidence conference you organized. you did a conference called redefining justice. you reached out to the koch brothers, the koch foundation to help fund it. and kathy just comes through the pages as someone who at a human level really into this. what's going on there? >> first and foremost, we're partners. we met on april 6th, 1974 at a party in brighton, massachusetts.
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>> you i know the minute and hour? >> pretty much. and, you know, my body of work and her body of work have been in tandem from the very get-go. i think one of the most extraordinary things about my wife is she is mentoring a person who -- a woman who was incarcerated for 23 years for as you might imagine, a very serious offense. we take this to heart. we talk about criminal justice reform and justice generally in our daily conversations. it's part of who we are. >> so i'm trying to understand how you've approached this ecosystem. you just made a comment about it being logical, it being science. it is very political in a sense that when you begin laying off workers in your prison system, which connecticut has been doing, 180 workers you've laid off recently. you've got declining room, declining beds, or -- i shouldn't say beds, but declining incarsees i should
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say. and you've succeeded on a recidivism in four different areas. when we were in oklahoma recently with mary fallon, the governor of oklahoma, she gave much the same line. i am interested in the degree in which your example, the frame that you have if there connecticut is what we're seeing in oklahoma, what we're seeing in south dakota, we're seeing in a lot of red states as well. and what are the similarities that you're finding as you talk to governors about what the buttons are to push? >> first and foremost, i hope we're pushing it a little bit further than other folks. i think that the science of human development, particularly with represent to young adults, people between the ages of 18 and 25 most particularly, where we've actually started units in prison specifically tending to the needs and quite frankly some of the possibilities of that age group are very significant. i think criminal justice reform can be driven because you want to save money or it can be
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driven because you want to save lives. i'm -- i'm in that group. >> right. >> and i want -- i think it makes little sense to send people who you don't have to send to prison where they're likely to get an advanced degree in criminal behavior. and i think, you know, as a former trial attorney, as a former prosecutor in new york city, i saw too many judges send people to jail because they were frustrated with this young person who appeared before them. not because the crime itself required necessarily that that person be incarcerated, but frustration took over and then all of the sudden you open up this opportunity for a lifetime of criminal behavior. you asked a specific question. are there similarities between folks who simply want the save money and those who want the save lives? there are similarities. but i think there are separate motivations. i think every wasted soul is just that. i think every damaged individual
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because of incarceration who really didn't need to be incarcerated wasn't in their or society's best interest is a potential problem for society to deal with on a much longer term basis with respect to employment and cost of benefits because they can't get employment and forced involved in future criminal endeavors because we do have gang communities in some of our state prisons. we've got to be careful about this stuff. we've got to be more careful about this stuff. >> how many -- i mean, i'm sort of interested in how you talk about the justice system or the judge being frustrated with the person being sentenced or dealt with. and what comes to mind right now is i -- and i am just reading some things about you. how bigoted is the prison system in connecticut? >> i hope less than other places. >> but when you talk about the behavior of someone who has committed some crime, part of that frustration, what you're saying is that judge is allowing other factors than the crime to
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come in. and when you look at the massive incarceration of blacks, of hispanics and others in the system. how do you undo that? >> listen, i talk about race all the time. because i think that it does represent this great lasting divide in american society. it's one of the lines of that great divide. i'm not accusing people who sentence people to jail because they're frustrated with racism, although it may have disproportionate impacts on a black community versus a white community. but what i really want to get at the heart of is we need to have more opportunities to deal with -- particularly young people, young offenders than we currently have. and if we create those additional opportunities, then we're likely to have better long-term results as opposed to simply managing someone's life for the next 30, 90, 120 days or three years.
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i think we simply can do better when we use the science of brain development and maturation to our advantage as opposed to our disadvantage. >> and i was also noticing again on the gender issue that in connecticut, your declining prison population the percentage of men is down 20%. the percentage of women is down 7%. why the gap? >> i think there are societal reasons. i think that criminal behavior has become more universal as opposed to less universal. but i also think that we were not paying as much attention. we have one woman's prison. and i think that now that we are paying more attention to that prison, and quite frankly a very gifted corrections commissioner in scott semple, we're going to drive that population down. i think we're actually now getting closer to 10%. the male population is down about 21, 22% since i became
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governor. we are -- we can within the next administration, whoever will be governor have actually halved our prison population based on current populations using crime statistics, recidivism statistics. we're in good shape to do some of these things. now it cost us $168 a night to house somebody. we can use that money more effectively in other arenas, including addressing some of the underlying traumas. women in prison are more likely to be drug or alcohol-dependent, statistically. certainly have suffered as many if not more traumas. and those traumas are frequently as a result of spousal or familial abuse, including a rape. so we're dealing with a very difficult audience of people, perhaps more difficult in women's prisons than male prisons given those traumas,
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those sets of traumas and behaviors. >> one of the questions we have, we've seen -- >> which simply means we have to work harder, and we should work harder. >> a lot of our news right now is focused on the tragedy in parkland, students standing up and having for a very, very different gun environment, different sort of stewardship in states. this is a real tragedy. i guess in anticipation, i wanted to ask you really a question about the resiliency of the reforms you had. if nikolas cruz had been in stanford, if this had unfolded in connecticut, what would be happening as you were responding to this? and would it be harder or easier to stand by this science and by the results you have generated, or would you see a tsunami of reaction that we need a very different system? harsher system? >> we had that experience at sandy hook. and it did not way lay us from the overall commitment to doing
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a better job in criminal justice systems, including the correction portion of that system. so i've been there. >> right. >> having said that, in connecticut, based on some of the laws we changed, you couldn't buy that weapon that was used in connecticut. and that's true in seven states and the district of columbia. and what i would also say, picking up on latter part of the discussion that i just witnessed, listen, i think we -- we are going to leave this and turn away for live coverage of the daily white house briefing. >> let me start by saying what a meaningful experience it was to attend the proceedings involving rove are rend billy graham. he left this earth last week, but his legacy is going to live on for eternity. he


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