Democratic Debate Candidates’ Views on Criminal Justice Reform: Beto O’Rourke

Former Representative of Texas, Beto O’Rourke has shaped his criminal justice reform plan around legalization of marijuana and prohibition-driven injustices due to his strong, personal beliefs about the issue.

It is obvious that O’Rourke’s stance on Marijuana is not driven solely by the recent uproars of legalization, which is exemplified by not only his outspoken comments on the issue in the past, but also by his book that was published in 2011 when he was a member of the El Paso, Texas City Council, about the failed drug war in the United States calling for the decriminalization of cannabis.

In addition to his step by step plan of legalizing marijuana, O’Rourke plans to to release those currently imprisoned due to marijuana charges.

Furthermore, he would impose taxes on marijuana sales which would fund his “Drug War Justice Grant” plan to help those previously convicted of marijuana charges to repair damages caused by the war on drugs.

Unlike some of the other candidates, O’Rourke shares each step that he will take in order to achieve his criminal justice reform plan rather than only stating outcomes that he will somehow make happen.

Overall, O’Rourke has a strong plan which has been thought out and developed for years, that will help to end mass incarceration by reducing drug charges and he even takes the extra step by creating a plan of rehabilitation for those impacted. By focusing on one main issue of marijuana in the criminal justice system, O’Rourke shows promise for actual reform to take place.

Image by Brent Barnett from Pixabay

At least with this candidate, voters know exactly what will be done in terms of criminal justice reform.