facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

Congress moves toward equal sentencing

July 26, 2009 at 1:22 AM   |   Comments

1 of 3
| License Photo
WASHINGTON, July 26 (UPI) -- The U.S. House and Senate are moving toward legislation to equalize sentencing for powder and crack cocaine, a Senate leader said.

Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., mentioned the disparity in sentencing between crack and powder cocaine during confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor. Current laws allow for more severe sentences for crack than for powder cocaine. Since African-Americans use crack more than powder, they are disproportionately punished.

A House subcommittee approved a bill this week to equalize sentencing and the Senate Judiciary Committee is working on a similar proposal, The Washington Post reported Saturday.

The Justice Department has begun a review of sentencing practices.

"We all know that this egregious difference in punishment is simply wrong," Attorney General Eric Holder told the National Association of Black Prosecutors in a speech Wednesday. "The Department of Justice will never back down from its duty to protect our citizens and our neighborhoods from drugs, or from the violence that all too often accompanies the drug trade. But we must discharge this duty in a way that protects our communities as well as the public's confidence in the justice system."

© 2009 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Most Popular
1
California officer allegedly stole nude photos during arrest California officer allegedly stole nude photos during arrest
2
California Marine dies in Islamic State mission in Iraq California Marine dies in Islamic State mission in Iraq
3
[UPDATE] Two Calif. deputies killed, two others shot [UPDATE] Two Calif. deputies killed, two others shot
4
Canada reflects on a week of domestic terror Canada reflects on a week of domestic terror
5
Lauren Hill's cancer won't stop teen from playing basketball Lauren Hill's cancer won't stop teen from playing basketball
Trending News
Around the Web
x
Feedback