Wide-Open Sentencing Commission Gives Biden Reform Path

Law360 (January 21, 2021, 10:11 PM EST) -- Despite a push last year by former President Donald Trump to fill the influential U.S. Sentencing Commission with multiple candidates perceived as tough on crime, that effort never materialized, leaving President Joe Biden with an opportunity to use the panel as an avenue to enact criminal justice reform.

Pro-reform court watchers in August reacted with worry when Trump announced a slate of intended nominees to the commission composed of four former prosecutors, including some who have joined the federal bench and established reputations for handing down long sentences, according to advocates. The commission establishes and amends the advisory sentencing guidelines that every...

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