During the first presidential debate, Clinton called for reform of our system of justice. In Clinton’s April 2015 speech on criminal justice reform, she listed five points which included the end of private prisons.
In the first presidential debate, Clinton renewed her call to end private prisons. She praised the Department of Justice’s announcement that it would phase out Bureau of Prisons contracts with private prison companies. Clinton went further than Pres. Obama and demanded the end of private state prisons.
The primary criticism of private companies providing or managing state prisons–their goal is profit. Profit for private prison companies dictates the prison environment. Cost saving measures to secure more profit means unsafe prisons for inmates and correctional officers.
Unlike other presidential campaigns, private prisons are now an election issue. A Pennsylvania focus group welcomed Clinton’s demand to end all private prisons. after the debate, the members of the focus group explained their strong feelings about private prisons.
In 2011, there was a “Kids for Cash” scandal which shocked the nation, but especially everyone in Pennsylvania. A Pennsylvania judge was sentenced to 28 years for accepting bribes from a private prison company owner. The owner paid the judge to send children to the private prison.
After this scandal, many Pennsylvanians wanted an end to private prisons. The focus group members saw Clinton’s position as a high mark for her bid to become president.
Trump did not comment at all about private prisons. Trump did not discuss any recommendations for the reform of our broken system of justice.
Pennsylvania is a swing state for the 2016 presidential election.
By: Bradley Schwartz
Founder of prisonpath.com