WASHINGTON (BP) -- The federal government took a major step toward criminal justice reform Tuesday night (Dec. 18) when the Senate approved legislation backed by a broad coalition that includes the Southern Baptist Convention's ethics entity.
Senators voted 87-12 for the First Step Act, which is designed to promote the rehabilitation and societal reentry of prisoners while maintaining public safety. The bill -- which enjoyed backing from every Democratic senator and all but 13 Republicans who opposed it or did not vote -- also would reform some sentencing requirements, including in the case of certain drug offenses.
It is anticipated the House of Representatives, which adopted an earlier version of the legislation with a 360-59 vote in May, will pass the Senate-approved bill quickly. President Trump endorsed the measure in November and is expected to sign it into law shortly after the House vote. Read More