“Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have rooted their appeal to Black voters on promises to address the over-incarceration of federal narcotics prisoners. Everyone from the Congressional Black Caucus to the Koch brothers supports this cause. Hillary and Bernie likely will keep hammering this message as they continue campaigning in preparation for the April 19 primary in New York.
“Thus far, the candidates’ ideas to counter over-incarceration appear solely to depend on Congressional action, rather than direct executive action. This issue is one in which the stroke of the president’s pen can have an immediate impact. The next president can follow Obama’s blueprint and strategically use the power to pardon—which Congress cannot impede or block—to release currently non-violent, low-risk prisoners serving time for drug offenses.”