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Trump Honored with 'Bipartisan Justice Award' by Black Leaders for Criminal Justice Reform

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President Donald Trump was honored Friday with the Bipartisan Justice Award for his role in helping pass the FIRST STEP Act, which helps ex-offenders find new purpose outside of prison.

‘The Bipartisan Justice Award is the highest honor given annually to a public servant who has demonstrated the ability to work across the aisle to achieve meaningful progress in reforming our criminal justice system,” the White House said in a news release, according to The Daily Caller. “The 2019 Bipartisan Justice award winner is President Donald J. Trump for his Bipartisan leadership in the passage of the historic First Step Act.”

“The award is being given by the 20/20 Bipartisan Justice Center, a non-profit organization founded by 20 Black Republicans and 20 Black Democrats in 2015, to elevate the issue of criminal justice reform above partisan politics,” the release said.

Trump was honored at Benedict College, an historic black college in Columbia, South Carolina.

During his remarks, Trump told the crowd that “the more people I spoke with, the more clear it became that the system could be deeply unfair.”

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He said the FIRST STEP Act was developed to end the “tragic cycle of poverty and crime and incarceration.”

Trump received applause from the crowd when he noted that the legislation undid what he called the “unjust provisions of the 1994 Clinton crime law.”

The law, passed during the administration of former President Bill Clinton, imposed harsh mandatory sentences for a number of crimes.

Do you support the FIRST STEP Act as a way to reduce crime?

Trump said the most important way to support released inmates is to help them find jobs. He said the current economy’s historically low unemployment rates are helping former prisoners find work.

“They come out and they’re being hired and I’ve had many people tell me — people that are doing the hiring — saying these people are unbelievable,” Trump said.

“Perhaps our economy is the best criminal justice reform of all.

Trump said his administration is focusing on the needs of Americans who live in inner cities, slamming past administrations for spending trillions of dollars on Middle East wars — money that could have been used to fund scholarships for inner-city youth.

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During the event, men and women who have been released from prison said the FIRST STEP Act changed their lives.

A White House fact sheet said the Trump administration’s efforts in this area include programs in the Department of Education to increase college attendance for former inmates and in the Department of Labor to increase job training for ex-offenders.

“The Trump Administration is promoting second chance hiring to give former inmates the opportunity to live crime-free lives and find meaningful employment,” the fact sheet said.

Trump’s trip to South Carolina was “an opportunity for Trump to tout one of his accomplishments, the passage of criminal justice reform last year,” Furman University political science professor Danielle Vinson told USA Today.

On Saturday, nine Democratic presidential candidates will be at the college for the “Second Step Presidential Justice Forum,” where they will discuss criminal justice reform.

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Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack can be reached at jackwritings1@gmail.com.
Location
New York City
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Foreign Policy, Military & Defense Issues




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