, 9 tweets, 4 min read
1. So Bernie released his criminal justice plan today, and it is... underwhelming.

It’s long on proposals—some good!—but so completely devoid of specifics as to say very little.

Also, has some strange errors that suggest a weak understanding of things.

2. Like this error. In 2006, the last year we have data, states and counties spent $4.5B on indigent defense; the Feds just a fraction of that.

Unless Bernie is proposing to completely federalize indigent defense spending, that triple-to-$14B... isn’t possible.
3. Or this “particularly high at the county level.”

At what other level does pretrial detention take place? Maybe it’s state-level in... Connecticut, which has a unified system? But jail IS a county-level policy.

It’s the sort of gaffe that suggests a weak grasp on details.
4. And that permeates the proposal. He wants to get rid of excessive fines and fees to fund the local systems. Great! Fines and fees are a big issue.


He’ll “incentivize” them. Somehow.

Which is hard, bc locals themselves barely understand how they use fine and fees.
5. He wants to make sure people have housing. Great! Housing instability def contributes to recidivism.

How? He’ll... guarantee it. Does this mean repealing limits on who is eligible for public housing, expanding the stock of housing, elim one-strike laws even for relatives?
6. This often doesn’t cleanly distinguish between what he would do at Fed level (which may still require difficult legislation) vs changes he’d like to make at state levels (which... harder still).

Like these: all fine, none could be imposed on states, that drive juvie system.
7. To his credit, towards the end, he brings up thinking abt violence and how survivors of violence are less punitive than we think. Good!

And Cure Violence. Good!

But again, most proposals are generic, and this comes at the end of a long proposal—many won’t get this far.
8. And, unsurprisingly, Sanders starts his proposal by attacking private prisons and private firms, and never really ever talks abt how the public sector is actually worse (except to mention prison gerrymandering, which: good).

Sanders is a true believer abt privates.
9. This proposal does a decent job a laying out the PROBLEMS, but it falls way short on the solutions.

Lots of “I’ll incentivize” without details.

“I’ll fund” without numbers (or number that are wrong).

Often blurs fed and non-fed issues.

There are a lot of red flags.
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