Kamala Harris, whose past as a prosecuting attorney and enforcement official has outlined abundant of her presidential campaign, free an idea weekday to reform the criminal justice system by ending mass immurement and therefore the war on medication.
Like Harris herself, the arrange — free earlier than the third Democratic dialogue later on — tugs between grip her prosecutorial past as AN quality and cutting against a number of the tough-on-crime policies that outlined her career.
It checks several of the boxes of the progressive criminal justice reform movement: legalizing marijuana and erasure past convictions; ending money bail, obligatory sentencing minimums, and therefore the death penalty; and prohibition personal prisons. And it conjointly includes some new touches that are unmoving in Harris’s prosecutorial career, sort of a concentrate on reducing reversion and therefore the creation of a “Bureau of kids and Family Justice,” that mimics a division Harris created as Golden State professional person general to concentrate on education, welfare, and juvenile justice.
Harris conjointly focuses on “instilling trust in enforcement,” together with an in-depth attempt to produce a national normal for police use of deadly force and therefore the creation of a “National Police Systems Review Board,” which might mimic the National Transportation Safety Board in a shot to gather knowledge on police shootings and misconduct.
Harris’s campaign same in a very statement that there was “perhaps nobody a lot of unambiguously suited” to criminal justice reform than the Golden State legislator, disputation that her time “working within the system” had ready her to know the way to address “the civil offer of our time.”
Her campaign catchword, “For the folks,” is a certain relevance her career as a prosecuting attorney, and she or he opened the second Democratic dialogue by promising to “successfully prosecute the case of 4 a lot of years of Donald Trump.”
But Harris’s prosecutorial past has conjointly been used against her within the presidential primary. within the second dialogue, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard same she was “deeply concerned” regarding Harris’s prosecutorial record, AN attack Harris appeared to struggle to defend herself against.
“There are too several examples to cite, however she place over one,500 folks in jail for marijuana violations then laughed regarding it once she was asked if she ever smoke-cured marijuana,” Gabbard same.
The attack was, in some ways in which, dishonorable regarding Harris’s role in drug prosecutions as California’s professional person general. however, it cut directly at what several believe may well be a weakness for Harris with black voters and young voters, with whom she has not however created vital inroads within the primary.
A book Harris wrote in 2009, known as good on Crime, highlights the gap between the criminal justice reform philosophy that launched Harris’s career and therefore the one she is pushing as a presidential candidate within the era of Black Lives Matter. Her 1st book makes very little mention of racial disparities or bias in policing. The arrange Harris hints weekday, against this, puts race at the forefront, light the disparities in marijuana prosecutions between black and white users of the drug and therefore the bail system’s bias against folks of color.
As a prime prosecuting attorney, several of Harris’s policies were targeted on increasing contact with enforcement — tho’ not essentially arrests — within the interest of reducing crime. below her watch, as an example, the district attorney’s workplace in metropolis stepped in to upset problems like grade school hooky. Harris’s presidential arrange, against this, involves “drastically limiting the number of individuals we tend to expose to our criminal justice system.”
The criminal justice rollout is that the second time Harris has a free major policy, meant to deal with a number of the most important queries of her campaign, earlier than a primary dialogue. At the tip of a Gregorian calendar month, days before her look within the second Democratic dialogue, Harris undraped her health care arrange, designed like a lot of moderate version of Medicare for All, when weeks of queries on what quantity she would embrace the Bernie Sanders’ health care agenda.
The arrange aroused being central to abundant of Harris’s dialogue performance — and the attacks against her by a number of her competitors.