Joe Biden: Mistake to support crime bill

Joe Biden: Mistake to support crime bill


Joseph R. Biden said Thursday that it was a mistake to support a crime bill he helped craft that many have blamed for the over-incarceration of people of color in subsequent decades.

His campaign then said Mr. Biden was actually talking about a different bill.Mr. Biden had been asked by a voter about his view on the crime bill “that you wrote in 1994.”

After he answered, moderator George Stephanopoulos asked Mr. Biden if it was a mistake to support it.

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“Yes it was,” Mr. Biden said at an ABC town hall in Philadelphia. “But here’s where the mistake came: the mistake came in terms of what the states did locally.”

He said maximum sentences were eventually reduced.

“Black folks went to jail a lot less than they would have before, but it was a mistake,” he said.

The Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 and Mr. Biden’s role in writing it were major issues in

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