California is all set to release up to 9,600 more prison inmates into society, most of them moderate-to-high-risk criminals, under the terms of a 2008 Supreme Court ruling suggesting that overcrowding was violating inmates’ Constitutional rights. The state of California has been forced to release inmates until it reaches 137% of capacity, even though Governor Jerry Brown has stated in the past that the state needs no new prisons. In January, Brown explained, “I don’t think that’s smart, and I don’t think the law requires it, and moreover, management of a prison is quintessentially an executive function.”
Brown is now appealing the Supreme Court ruling again, attempting to demonstrate that the state has spent enough money to upgrade care for 119,000 inmates, complying with Justice Anthony Kennedy’s order that prisoners could be retained “if significant progress is made toward remedying the underlying constitutional violations.”
Lawyers for the state claim in their brief that unless the Court reconsiders, “offenders with a history of serious or violent offenses who are very likely to commit more serious crimes” will be set free. Rebekah Evenson, lawyer for the prisoners, said, “This is political posturing. It’s the manufacturing of a constitutional crisis.”
The state has already released some 37,000 prisoners under Jerry Brown’s infamous “realignment” program, many of whom have gone on to commit crimes including rape and murder.
Ben Shapiro is Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the New York Times bestseller “Bullies: How the Left’s Culture of Fear and Intimidation Silences America” (Threshold Editions, January 8, 2013).