Brennan Center Suggests 15 Executive Order Initiatives


The Brennan Center for Justice is urging President Obama to use his executive powers to create a commission on mass incarceration. That is among 15 uses of executive powers “to strengthen democracy, secure justice, and further the rule of law” suggested by Michael Waldman, president of the law and policy institute based at New York University Law School.

Among the others: commission a Justice Department report on The Constitution in 2025, modeled after The Constitution in the Year 2000; issue an order directing federal agencies to recast their criminal justice grants in a Success-Oriented Funding Model; direct the Justice Department to identify federal prisoners to whom the Fair Sentencing Act would retroactively apply, and recommend commutations for all those eligible, barring exceptional circumstances; direct the attorney general to issue new guidance banning discriminatory law enforcement techniques; request that the attorney general survey the use of “secret law” in the federal government and develop procedures to make the law public, and issue an order applying key federal information-sharing restrictions to “suspicious activity reports” provided by state and local law enforcement.

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