JEFF SESSIONS ORDERS RETURN TO DRACONIAN DRUG SENTENCING, CANCELS OBAMA POLICIES

In a striking departure from Obama-era policy, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has ordered a return to harsh charges and penalties in the fight against drug-related crime.

Sessions’s memo, issued nationwide Thursday, directs prosecutors to seek maximum charges and fall back to mandatory minimum sentences, even for non-violent drug violations.

Recent years have witnessed a bipartisan effort to rethink the war on drugs, with former Attorney General Eric Holder moving to scale back on strict charges and long sentences for those not associated with gangs, cartels or other major drug trafficking organizations.

The Sessions memo explicitly rolls back Holder’s policy, extolling a return to “the enforcement of the laws as passed by Congress, plain and simple,” as he noted in a Friday morning speech.

According to the Washington Post, American Civil Liberties Union director Udi Ofer said in a statement, “Jeff Sessions is pushing federal prosecutors to reverse progress and repeat a failed experiment,” noting that people of color are disproportionately affected by such policies.

Sessions’s policy shift comes after an earlier reversal on the use of private prisons within the federal prison system, inviting speculation that he envisions a future where greater prison capacity might be required.

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