October 14, 2014

CBS News on Mandatory Minimum Sentencing

CBS News Sunday Morning did a special segment on sentencing reform and the effects mandatory minimum sentences have on individuals and their families. This segment dives into the harsh realities of Orville Lee Wollard’s case, a first time offender who received a 20 year mandatory minimum sentence for firing a warning shot while trying to… Read more »

October 9, 2014

New Poll Finds 77% of Americans Support Eliminating Mandatory Minimums for Non-Violent Offenses

A new Reason-Rupe Public Opinion Survey finds that 77 percent of Americans support eliminating mandatory minimum sentences for non-violent drug offenses. That number is up from 71 percent in December 2013, the last time Reason-Rupe polled on the question. You can find the full survey results here (PDF); mandatory minimums are question 17.  “Almost three decades have… Read more »

October 1, 2014

AG Eric Holder: No More Super Mandatory Minimums to Punish Defendants Who Want a Trial

Attorney General Eric Holder has issued a memo prohibiting prosecutors from using the threat of enhanced mandatory minimum sentences solely to force criminal defendants to plead guilty in drug trafficking cases. These super-sized mandatory minimums, called “section 851 enhancements,” allow prosecutors to ensure a defendant’s mandatory minimum sentence is doubled or even increased to life in… Read more »

September 25, 2014

Congress Update: Gone for Elections, and Home With You!

Easy come, easy go – members of Congress came back to Washington, DC after a long August break and then worked only a handful of days in September. They didn’t pass any of our sentencing reform bills. Instead, they passed a budget resolution to avoid a government shutdown and then, on September 19, flew back home to… Read more »

September 2, 2014

New report from FAMM: Massachusetts candidates’ positions on mandatory minimum drug sentences

Over 90% of respondents favor repeal or reform   Media contact: Barbara Dougan, (617) 543-0878 or Mike Riggs, (202) 621-6706 BOSTON – Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM) is excited to release a collection of surveys detailing how 24 candidates for four offices view mandatory minimum drug laws in Massachusetts. FAMM asked candidates from every major race—including governor,… Read more »

August 27, 2014

The Simpsons, Bear Patrol, and Mandatory Minimums

I spent last weekend doing what you should have been doing, to wit, binge watching The Simpsons. FXX is playing “Every Simpsons ever” 24 hours a day over a twelve-day period that began last Thursday. I spent the huge majority of my weekend watching that marathon, mostly to avoid having to walk outside in the kind of heat… Read more »


All blog posts older than June 1st 2013, are available at our previous blog.