Politics

Joe Biden Tells ACLU Voter He’ll Cut Prison Population By More Than Half

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Under fire from the left and President Donald Trump for his previous tough-on-crime stances, former Vice President Joe Biden made a bold statement about prison reform over the weekend.

At a campaign event Sunday in Charleston, South Carolina, Biden told an ACLU voter that he would cut the prison population by more than half if he became president. In a video first obtained by Buzzfeed News from the ACLU, Biden appeared to renege on his past positions on crime. (RELATED: 2020 Democrats Attack Joe Biden For Saving Segregationists Are Examples Of ‘Civility’)

“Would you commit to cutting incarceration by 50%?” the man asked Biden.

“More than that. We can do it more than that,” the former vice president responded.

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden speaks to guests at the Rainbow PUSH Coalition Annual International Convention. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden speaks to guests at the Rainbow PUSH Coalition Annual International Convention (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Earlier this year, Trump unleashed on Biden in a tweet thread for his role in crafting the 1994 crime bill, which significantly increased mass incarceration, but at the same time led to a decline in the violent crime that had been plaguing the nation.

“Anyone associated with the 1994 Crime Bill will not have a chance of being elected. In particular, African Americans will not be [a]ble to vote for you. I, on the other hand, was responsible for Criminal Justice Reform, which had tremendous support, and helped fix the bad 1994 Bill!” Trump tweeted at the time.

Trump and some of his supporters have juxtaposed Biden’s support for the crime bill with Trump’s signing of the “First Step Act” last year which reduced mandatory minimum sentences, and allowed for the early release of some convicted criminals.

Left-wing activist groups like the ACLU support a more expansive view of criminal justice reform and have strongly opposed tough-on-crime laws throughout its history.