A former Congressman has accused President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder of a racial ulterior motive in a massive early prison release planned for up to 10,000 drug dealers.
Ernest Istook, a former U.S. Congressman and writer for the Washington Times, pointed out on his radio program that “Obama claims minorities usually get longer terms than whites, so he wants to shorten their time served. He says letting them out of prison early will save taxpayers money.”
Most of the prisoners were convicted for crack cocaine violations, almost always for dealing or possession with intent to sell. Istook went on to say, “It’s like what President Obama claimed about marijuana, namely that enforcing anti-drug laws is unfair to minorities. When minorities commit a crime more often than other groups, rather than trying to fix behavior, Obama screams racism and says we shouldn’t enforce that law.”
In a January interview with The New Yorker, President Obama claimed that US drug law enforcement punishes a “select few.” Obama opined, “We should not be locking up kids or individual users for long stretches of jail time when some of the folks who are writing those laws have probably done the same thing.” The President insisted that the current drug laws unfairly target young minorities and that there is an inherent racism built into our criminal justice system. “Middle-class kids don’t get locked up for smoking pot, and poor kids do,” Obama said. “And African-American kids and Latino kids are more likely to be poor and less likely to have the resources and the support to avoid unduly harsh penalties.”
The 14-year U.S. congressman and radio host faulted the President for not addressing the behavior that leads young minorities down the path of illegal drug use and trafficking. Istook says that instead, “He’s applying that philosophy [of racism in the system] to early prison releases for thousands of drug dealers.”
Istook further stated that over 30,000 prison inmates are being considered for release. Estimates are that a third could receive executive clemency, reducing their sentences to time already served. He asserted that letting the prisoners back out on the streets could be very costly in terms of additional crimes committed, including “selling dope again to young people.”