Fox News judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano said President Donald Trump’s prison reform push is a political “win-win,” on “Fox & Friends” Thursday, because it ends mandatory minimum sentencing.
“In the old system, the law as it is today, in most states and in the federal system it’s a minimum mandatory sentence, meaning the judge has very little discretion. The judge is basically checking a box on a spreadsheet, adding and subtracting numbers and the bottom line number tells you where the person should go to jail and for how long they should go away,” Napolitano said.
“There is no greater obstacle to justice in sentencing than minimum mandatory sentences,” he continued. “And this gets rid of minimum mandatory sentences. You have — politically it’s a win-win situation.” (RELATED: CNN’s Van Jones Gives Trump Rare Praise And ‘Applause’ For Prison Reform Agenda)
The optics of sending someone to jail who does not belong there, whose crime was not violence, who deserves a second chance and a judge being denied the power to do that — I can remember a case where as a joke a kid sold a cop a plastic bag filled with soap powder, pretending it was cocaine. The case came to me. I said, let’s return the 50 bucks and put this kid on probation for a year so it doesn’t happen again. I was reversed by the appellate court because selling a look-alike drug in New Jersey requires three years in jail and then the appellate court was reversed and I had to re-sentence the kid.
“This is an unbelievable unification of both ends of the ideological spectrum to do the right thing,” Napolitano concluded. “It couldn’t happen under Barack Obama. It probably wouldn’t happen if Jeff Sessions were still attorney general.”
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