We all read the papers. We all know how one violent offender after another, even thugs who victimize children, are getting out of jail to wreck more innocent lives.
Our congressmen always say they’re going to get tough on crime. The scam is that most vicious crimes are state matters, not federal matters. And state legislators have responded poorly. Most of the criminal justice system reform has come about through citizen initiatives. But the feds just have no jurisdiction.
All the same, congressmen campaign as if they do have it, and make all kinds of esoteric crimes against the government punishable by the death penalty. No one’s been hung yet. Well, last year one congressman did find a way for the federal government to make a real difference in fighting real crimes.
When Matt Salmon of Arizona went to Congress in 1994, Washington know-it-alls said he couldn’t do anything especially since he term-limited himself to six years in office. But he introduced legislation called Aimee’s law that denies federal money to states that release violent offenders who go on to commit further crimes in other states. This legislation does the one thing the federal government can do to help prevent the kind of violence that could tear apart your family or mine. It gives the states a financial incentive to get tough on violent crime. Matt Salmon passed it into law. You won’t find him in Washington anymore. He’s back home in Phoenix. And he got something done.
This is Common Sense.Â I’m Paul Jacob.