Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is taking on the private prison industry by proposing a bill that will outlaw private prisons, reported Salon.
“We want to deal with minimum sentencing,” said Sanders at a rally in Reno, Nevada. “Too many lives have been destroyed for non-violent issues. People that are sent to jail have police records. We have got to change that. Our job is to keep people out of jail, not in jail.”
America leads the world most people in prison per capita, and criminal justice reform has emerged as a major talking point in the Democratic race. The private prison industry is a multi-billion dollar industry that profits off of people being sent to prison. The Sanders campaign posted a message on Facebook that read:
It is morally repugnant and a national tragedy that we have privatized prisons all over America. In my view, corporations should not be allowed to make a profit by building more jails and keeping more Americans behind bars. We have got to end the private-for-profit prison racket in America!
On the other hand, Republicans have cozy relationships with the private prison industries and support frivolous criminal justice laws that ensure prisons stay full. Sanders wants to fight against the spread of crime, while the GOP wants to perpetuate crime to please their corporate prison donors.