Paul Hopes to End Disparity between Cocaine Sentencing

(WBKO) -- Friday Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky announced a piece of legislation that could get some people with drug convictions out of prison faster.

Kentucky's junior Senator and Bowling Green resident says he is continuing to push for civil rights.

Paul is proposing legislation that would fix the difference between sentencing for crack and powder cocaine.

He made the announcement during a speech at the National Urban League's annual convention.

Crack cocaine has tougher penalties than powder cocaine but not everyone is on the same side.

"I say enough enough. I wont sit idly by watch our criminal justice system continue to consume confine and define our young men. I say we take a stand and fight for justice now," said Paul.

"You have to work hard to get yourself into Federal Prison. Most people that we refer to the U.S. Attorney's Office for prosecution have been in and out of the state system two, three, four times. So again, they don't take first time offenders with a small amount of drug trafficking. It has to be a fairly significant amount with a lengthy criminal history," said Tommy Loving, Warren County Drug Task Force.

Loving also said he thinks powder cocaine sentencing ought to be raised to what it is for crack-cocaine.

Paul has also sponsored legislation to eliminate mandatory minimum sentences, restore the voting rights to some convicted felons and make it easier for people to expunge their criminal records. Paul said anyone who says race does not skew the criminal justice system is not paying attention.


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