The conservative approach to criminal justice:
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Cohen: More Federal Spending is Counterproductive to Police Reform

| December 6, 2014

Right on Crime policy analyst Derek Cohen writes in The Hill about the Obama administration’s proposed federal initiatives in criminal justice policy. He makes several crucial points, emphasizing the “do something!” nature of the president’s proposals, and the cynical attempt to take advantage of the news cycle. As Cohen writes, “the proposed spending would further erode the accountability local police have to the community… A local policing agenda that comes from Capitol Hill or 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue will be wholly political, captured by special interests and give little weight to the people it purports to help.”

He continued:

Criminal justice policy is, and always has been, controlled at the state level. This authority is then delegated to cities and counties pursuant to most states’ constitutions. This ensures that the potentially coercive authority of government is accountable to elected local — and distally to state — officials. Supporters of recent reform efforts would be more effective seeing that individuals maintain as much control over their police as possible, rather than rattling a cup at the federal government.

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RIGHT ON CRIME is a national campaign to promote successful, conservative solutions on American criminal justice policy—reforming the system to ensure public safety, shrink government, and save taxpayers money. By sharing research and policy ideas and mobilizing strong conservative voices, we work to raise awareness of the growing support for effective reforms within the conservative movement. We are transforming the debate on criminal justice in America.

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