President Obama says fairness, proportionality, and ensuring communities are safer from the offset are key ingredients to criminal justice reform. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) President Barack Obama and law enforcement leaders spoke with the Marshall Project at the White House, Thursday (October 22) on criminal justice reform, as the president gets set to meet with Americans who are working to improve the system. "Our criminal justice system should treat people fairly regardless of race, wealth, stature," said Obama, as he spoke with the non-profit news organization. "I think there's been a healthy debate around police community relations and some of the episodes we've seen around the country," said the president, adding that more needs to be done. Lowering prison sentences for non-violent drug offenders appeared to have few opponents in a U.S. Senate judiciary committee hearing on Monday, a sign of the waning influence of police groups and unions in the debate over prison reform. Police groups and unions were once seen as a major obstacle to rethinking the policies that led to the United States having the highest incarceration rate in the world.