Texas Shows Criminal Justice Reform Works

On the floor, I discussed the First Step Act and highlighted provisions to reduce recidivism based off successful reforms in Texas. Excerpts of Sen. Cornyn’s floor remarks are below, and video can be found here.

Almost everybody in prison will serve their time and get out of prison. The question for us is, will they be better prepared to live life on the outside in a productive way, or will they simply reengage in a turnstile?

We've seen these changes implemented across the country at the state level, including my home state of Texas, which have yielded incredible results.

So using sorts of recidivism reduction programs that are included in the First Step Act at the state level, we were able to reduce our incarceration rate and our crime rate by double-digits at the same time.

We're not just talking about money. We're talking about human potential. We're investing in the men and women who want to turn their lives around once they're released from prison, and we're investing in so doing in stronger and more viable communities, and we're investing tax dollars into a system that helps produce stronger citizens.

That's what this legislation tries to do and that's why it's gained such broad support on both sides of the aisle.

The odds of these individuals leaving prison and becoming more productive members of society should be higher than the odds of a coin flip. I’m proud to be a cosponsor of this legislation, and I look forward to voting yes when it comes up for a vote later today or tomorrow.


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