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Bill Clinton: My Crime Bill Did ‘Cast Too Wide a Net’

Former President Bill Clinton admitted that parts of his crime bill “cast too wide a net, and we have too many people in prison” in an interview with CNN International Correspondent Christiane Amanpour on Wednesday.

While Bill denied that Hillary Clinton was moving away from his policy, he expressed his agreement with her stance on crime. Clinton explained, “let’s go back and look at the whole fact. My criminal justice initiative was to put 100,000 more police on the street, create more positive activities for young people, ban assault weapons, and limit the magazine size, pass the Brady Bill, and the — the Republicans basically wanted to emphasize three strikes you’re out and all that. But I wanted to pass a bill, and so I did go along with it. And there was a whole movement toward emphasizing that, especially that three strikes deal, because we had evidence that a very small percentage of the criminal population created a very high percentage of the — committed a very high percentage of the serious crimes. The problem is the way it was written and implemented, we cast too wide a net, and we have too many people in prison. And we wound up spending — putting so many people in prison, that there wasn’t enough money left to educate them, train them for new jobs, and increase the chances when they came out that they could live productive lives. I strongly support what she’s doing. And I think any policy that was adopted when I was president in federal law that contributed to it should be changed.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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