The Right on Crime Campaign has taken its arguments to the Washington Post op-ed page, with former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Pat Nolan of Prison Fellowship saying that conservatives’ backing of states’ “intelligently reducing their prison populations [ ] represents a seismic shift in the legislative landscape.” Say Gingrich and Nolan: “We can no longer afford business as usual with prisons. The criminal justice system is broken, and conservatives must lead the way in fixing it.”
Gingrich and Nolan depart from the assertion that crime has dropped because more people are locked up. They say, “The facts show otherwise. While crime fell in nearly every state over the past seven years, some of those with the largest reductions in crime have also lowered their prison population.” The writers note that the effort is supported by the likes of former attorney general Ed Meese, former federal anti-drug official Asa Hutchinson, David Keene of the American Conservative Union, John Dilulio of the University of Pennsylvania, Grover Norquist of Americans for Tax Reform, and Richard Viguerie of ConservativeHQ.com.