State of Iowa Archives: on Drugs


Chris Dodd: Reduce sentencing disparity for crack cocaine retroactively

Q: The US Sentencing Commission recently limited the disparity in sentencing guidelines for those convicted of crimes involving crack cocaine versus crimes involving powder cocaine. Should that change be retroactive?

CLINTON: I believe we’ve got to decrease the disparity that exists. But I have problems with retroactivity.

DODD: I’d be inclined to say yes on the retroactivity.

EDWARDS: I’m not just inclined to say yes; the answer is yes, absolutely; it should be retroactive.

KUCINICH: Yes.

Source: 2007 Iowa Brown & Black Presidential Forum Dec 1, 2007

Dennis Kucinich: Reduce sentencing disparity for crack cocaine retroactively

Q: The US Sentencing Commission recently limited the disparity in sentencing guidelines for those convicted of crimes involving crack cocaine versus crimes involving powder cocaine. Should that change be retroactive?

CLINTON: I believe we’ve got to decrease the disparity that exists. But I have problems with retroactivity.

DODD: I’d be inclined to say yes on the retroactivity.

EDWARDS: I’m not just inclined to say yes; the answer is yes, absolutely; it should be retroactive.

KUCINICH: Yes.

Source: 2007 Iowa Brown & Black Presidential Forum Dec 1, 2007

Hillary Clinton: Reduce sentencing disparity for crack, but not retroactively

Q: The US Sentencing Commission recently limited the disparity in sentencing guidelines for those convicted of crimes involving crack cocaine versus crimes involving powder cocaine. Should that change be retroactive?

A: I believe we’ve got to decrease the disparity that exists. It is really unconscionable that someone who uses five grams of crack cocaine, compared to 500 grams of powder cocaine would face such disparate sentencing. And it’s further compounded because the possession of crack cocaine really is unique in the way that it leads directly to prison for so many people. So I am going to tackle the disparity. I think it definitely needs to be prospective on principle. I have problems with retroactivity. I think that it’s something that a lot of communities will be concerned about as well, so let’s tackle this disparity, let’s take it on. The sentencing commission hasn’t come forward yet with its specific recommendation but I’m looking forward to seeing it.

Source: 2007 Iowa Brown & Black Presidential Forum Dec 1, 2007

John Edwards: Reduce sentencing disparity for crack cocaine retroactively

Q: The US Sentencing Commission recently limited the disparity in sentencing guidelines for those convicted of crimes involving crack cocaine versus crimes involving powder cocaine. Should that change be retroactive?

CLINTON: I believe we’ve got to decrease the disparity that exists. But I have problems with retroactivity.

DODD: I’d be inclined to say yes on the retroactivity.

EDWARDS: I’m not just inclined to say yes; the answer is yes, absolutely; it should be retroactive.

KUCINICH: Yes.

Source: 2007 Iowa Brown & Black Presidential Forum Dec 1, 2007

Art Small: Consider loosening enforcement of marijuana laws

The state can consider loosening its enforcement of its marijuana laws as some states have done or are considering doing. California is said to have saved $100 million a year in enforcement costs by relaxing its laws. A recent article on marijuana laws observed: “PROHIBITION supposedly divided America into three parts: wets, drys and hypocrites. Cannabis is now doing the same. One in three adult Americans admits to having tried the herb.” In short, I can find no quick fixes. There is no silver bullet.
Source: Governor’s study on Crime and Punishment in Iowa Dec 31, 2002

Art Small: Drug treatment more effective than incarceration

More emphasis must be placed on treatment programs, both within the institutions and within the communities. Treatment and “coerced abstinence” substance abuse programs can work, despite arguments to the contrary. True, the success rate and the effect on recidivism is not what we would like it to be. But the solid evidence shows that treatment is cost effective. Dollars put into treatment pay a good return. “Treatment is 15 to 17 times more effective in reducing crime than incarceration.”
Source: Governor’s study on Crime and Punishment in Iowa Dec 31, 2002

Bill Bradley: No mandatory sentencing for first-time drug offenders

The first thing I would do [to address unequal justice for young African-American males] is bring the difference between crack and cocaine much closer together. I would then try to take a look at mandatory first-time, nonviolent drug offenders and say, does mandatory sentencing make sense there? I don’t think it does.
Source: Democrat Debate in Des Moines, Iowa Jan 17, 2000

Elizabeth Dole: Applauds community-based fight against drug epidemic

We must choose to return safety to our streets and moral seriousness to our war on drugs. Drug use among our youth is up 141% among teenagers in recent years. I know, Senator Grassley, that you’ve put together an anti-drug coalition, called Face It Together (FIT), which seeks to bring people together in a community-based approach to fight this epidemic; parents, students, businesses, our religious leaders, law enforcement, and the media. And I applaud you efforts.
Source: Speech at Iowa State University, 2/15/99 Feb 15, 1999

  • The above quotations are from State of Iowa Politicians: Archives.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Drugs.
  • Click here for other issues (main summary page).
2012 Presidential contenders on Drugs:
  Democrats:
Pres.Barack Obama(IL)
V.P.Joe Biden(DE)

Republicans:
Gov.Mitt Romney(MA)
Rep.Paul Ryan(WI)
Third Parties:
Green: Dr.Jill Stein(MA)
Libertarian: Gov.Gary Johnson(NM)
Justice: Mayor Rocky Anderson(UT)
Constitution: Rep.Virgil Goode(VA)
Peace+Freedom: Roseanne Barr(HI)
Reform Party: André Barnett(NY)
AmericansElect: Gov.Buddy Roemer(LA)
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Page last updated: Dec 16, 2013