The Complex History of the Controversial 1994 Crime Bill
Brennan Center for Justice
April 14, 2016

“When Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders take the stage Thursday night in Brooklyn, the debate moderators will almost certainly ask them about a 22-year-old crime law. The issue is back in the news after the 1994 crime bill came up at a Hillary Clinton campaign rally last week.

“Since then, much has been said about the legislation’s effect on crime and mass incarceration. Some argue the measure, officially called the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, led to a drop in crime. Others vehemently contend it did not. Questions abound about its impact on mass incarceration.”

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