Cory Booker, former Newark mayor and newly elected Senator from New Jersey, is interested in criminal justice reform, which has not been a major topic of late in the U.S. Senate. Booker has posted a paper titled, “Reforming America’s Criminal Justice System: Refocusing on Delivering Results, Aligning with Our Values, and Reducing the Burden on Taxpayers.” In it, Booker wrotes that he was watched police “arrest, re-arrest, and then re-arrest again, sending the same person for another trip through a revolving door system that not only largely fails to rehabilitate, but too often makes reoffending commonplace and most definitely is not helping to make our communities safer.”
Booker calls for a system that “brings together communities and law enforcement and that restores the strength of families, stopping, rather than perpetuating, the intergenerational cycle of incarceration. That is not happening now.” He says that “massive amounts of money” are wasted on strategies that make our communities less, not more, safe, partly by emphasize punishment over rehabilitation for low-level, non-violent crimes. He says reform is under way in Newark driven by “a broad-based coalition, including, for example, the Manhattan Institute,a conservative think tank. We worked across the aisle because this issue is not a left or right problem.
It's a common sense problem.”