Austin, TX — The House Judiciary Committee today approved by a vote of 25-5 the Formerly Incarcerated Reenter Society Transformed Safely Transitioning Every Person Act (H.R. 5682).  Sponsored by Representatives Doug Collins (R-GA) and Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), the FIRST STEP Act improves the federal prison by providing reentry programming to help reduce recidivism, increase public safety, and give those incarcerated a second chance once they have paid their debt to society. Right on Crime signatories former Attorney General of Virginia Ken Cuccinelli and former U.S. Senator Jim DeMint issued the following statements on the committee action:

“FIRST STEP Act will help stop the vicious cycle of offense and imprisonment by addressing the underlying causes of criminality. The opportunity to go from prison to paycheck improves public safety, reduces recidivism and gives a second chance to those who have paid their debt to society. I commend the bill sponsors and the House Judiciary Committee for the work they put into getting this bill out of committee. I encourage House Leadership to bring it to the floor quickly for consideration, so we can put a stop to the revolving door of offense and imprisonment,” said Ken Cuccinelli, former Attorney General of Virginia and Right on Crime signatory.

“I applaud the House Judiciary Committee for approving the FIRST STEP Act. Prison reform has proven successful in reducing recidivism, improving public safety and saving taxpayer dollars in states like Texas, Georgia, and South Carolina. Passing this bill out of committee is the first step toward implementing similar reforms at the federal level and giving incarcerated people the tools they need to become productive members of society,” said Jim DeMint, former Member of the United States Senate.

Right on Crime is a national campaign of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, in partnership  with the American Conservative Union Foundation and Prison Fellowship, that supports conservative solutions for reducing crime, restoring victims, reforming offenders, and lowering taxpayer costs. The movement was born in Texas in 2005, and in recent years, dozens of states such as Georgia, Ohio, Kentucky, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Louisiana, have led the way in implementing conservative criminal justice reforms.

Right on Crime has the support and works to mobilize the voices of more than ninety prominent conservative leaders who have endorsed the principles of conservative criminal justice reform, including former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Concerned Women for America President Penny Nance, former U.S. Senator Jim DeMint, former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell, and Americans for Tax Reform President Grover Norquist.

For more information or to schedule an interview with Right on Crime spokespersons, please contact Kevin McVicker at (703) 739-5920 or [email protected].