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Constitution Project Applauds Supreme Court Sentencing Decision

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DECEMBER 10, 2007
3:38 PM

CONTACT: Constitution Project
Corey Owens Communications Coordinator (202) 580-6922
cowens@constitutionproject.org

 
Constitution Project Applauds Supreme Court Sentencing Decision
 

WASHINGTON - December 10 - Today the Constitution Project applauded the Supreme Court's decision to allow federal judges who disagree with federal sentencing guidelines in crack-cocaine cases to impose less severe sentences. In today's 7-2 ruling in Kimbrough v. U.S., the Supreme Court noted the opinion of the U.S. Sentencing Commission that the 100-to-1 crack v. powder cocaine disparity exaggerates the seriousness of certain drug-related crimes.

"The sentencing guidelines in crack-cocaine cases are woefully unfair and dramatically limit the ability of independent judges to do their jobs," said Virginia Sloan, president of the Constitution Project. "The Supreme Court's decision reinvigorates our system of justice with a sense that penalties should be proportionate to crimes."

The Constitution Project's bipartisan Sentencing Committee, co-chaired by Edwin Meese III, Distinguished Fellow in Public Policy at the Heritage Foundation and Attorney General under President Ronald Reagan, and Phillip Heymann, professor of law at Harvard Law School and Deputy Attorney General under President Bill Clinton, addressed the sentencing disparity in its report, "Recommendations for Federal Criminal Sentencing in a Post-Booker World." The Committee called the 100:1 powder/crack cocaine weight disparity on which the sentencing guidelines are based "unjustifiable as a matter of policy," and urged the Sentencing Commission to alter the guidelines in a way that would "ameliorate the harmful effects of this rule."

To learn more about the Constitution Project visit http://www.constitutionproject.org/.

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