The conservative approach to criminal justice:
fighting crime, supporting victims, and protecting taxpayers.

Aubrey Vaughan Travis

State Director, Kentucky

Follow: @aubreyvaughan

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Share this article

Filed Under:

More From:


    Kentucky Governor & Lawmakers Agree: Criminal Justice Reform is a Priority in the Bluegrass State

    | January 15, 2020

    Last week, Kentucky leaders on both sides of the aisle pledged to make criminal justice reform a top priority this session. This commitment is welcome given the growing prison overcrowding crisis.

    Kentucky holds the dubious honor of being among the top ten states for highest overall incarceration rates, and falls only behind Oklahoma for being the highest incarcerator of women. A significant percentage of Kentucky’s prison population are drug addicts convicted of low level, felony drug possession. Kentucky’s practice of incarcerating these people comes with a hefty price tag that has driven the state’s correctional budget north of  $600 million annually. Moreover, it diverts limited law enforcement and correctional resources away from violent offenders. Without reform, these costs will continue putting an ever-greater burden on Kentucky’s taxpayers and economy.

    Only a week into the 2020 session, lawmakers have plenty of time to consider a number of proposals that would uphold public safety and save money while reducing Kentucky’s non-violent prison population.

    Over the next three months, lawmakers should increase the momentum from recent sessions, and move forward on evidence-based solutions that promote public safety and begin to reduce prison overcrowding.


    AUBREY VAUGHAN TRAVIS is Right on Crime’s state director for Kentucky. Travis is a graduate of Wake Forest University and the University of Kentucky College of Law. While in law school, she served as President of the Federalist Society and clerked for now-Congressman James Comer, current USCIS Acting Director Ken Cuccinelli, and RANDPAC. Following graduation, she worked in a senior fundraising role on Senator Rand Paul’s presidential campaign, and then worked in Senator Paul’s Senate office as his General Counsel in the 114th and 115th Congresses. She moved back to Kentucky in 2018, where she served as an executive advisor in Governor Matt Bevin’s administration until his term ended. She resides in Lexington, Kentucky with her husband.