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Senate and House Lawmakers Release Updated First Step Act

By Staff –

A group of bipartisan, bicameral lawmakers released a revised copy of the First Step Act yesterday and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Speaker Paul Ryan say they will take up a vote on a criminal reform package before the end of the month.

The updates to the bill, calling for modest changes in the criminal justice system and ease some punitive federal prison sentences, was brokered by the White House.

The revised legislation further clarifies eligibility for earned time credits following successful completion of evidence-based recidivism reduction programs, and expands on the existing list of disqualifying offenses. The changes address points raised by some law enforcement groups and provides for additional transparency in the Bureau of Prisons’ risk assessment framework.

“Over the last several years, we’ve expanded support for comprehensive criminal justice reform by listening to stakeholders and lawmakers to strike a balance that reduces crime and recidivism, and the associated taxpayer burden, while ensuring that dangerous and career criminals face steep consequences for their actions. Today’s update represents the latest in our effort to achieve this goal. I appreciate the engagement from many of my colleagues to fine tune the most significant criminal justice reform in a generation, and I applaud President Trump and the White House for bringing everyone to the table to make this happen. Following these changes and the growing demonstration of support for this bill, Leader McConnell is keeping his word by pledging to hold a vote this year,” Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley said.

Lawmakers currently sponsoring the bill are:

1. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa)
2. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.)
3. Mike Lee (R-Utah)
4. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.)
5. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.)
6. Cory Booker (D-N.J.)
7. Tim Scott (R-S.C.)
8. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.)
9. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa)
10. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.)
11. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.)
12. Chris Coons (D-Del.)
13. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.)
14. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.)
15. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.)
16. Doug Jones (D-Ala.)
17. Susan Collins (R-Maine)
18. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.)
19. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.)
20. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.)
21. Rand Paul (R-Ky.)
22. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii)
23. Rob Portman (R-Ohio)
24. Angus King (I-Maine)
25. Todd Young (R-Ind.)
26. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii)
27. Bill Cassidy (R-La.)
28. Ben Cardin (D-Md.)
29. Steve Daines (R-Mont.)
30. Tina Smith (D-Minn.)
31. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.)
32. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.)
33. Ted Cruz (R-Texas)
34. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.)

A summary of the revised bill can be found HERE