Sentencing News

FAMM has resources and contacts to assist the media with reporting on mandatory minimum sentences and their effects on the country. Media inquiries should be directed to


December 4, 2013

Sixth Circuit Delivers Disappointing Ruling on Retroactivity

We have some disappointing but expected news to share: the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled yesterday that the Fair Sentencing Act (FSA) does not apply retroactively – in other words, it does not shorten sentences for federal prisoners who received mandatory minimum sentences for crack cocaine offenses before August 3, 2010. Congress can still… Read more »

December 3, 2013

Does the Attorney General Mean What He Says About Sentencing Reform?

(The Atlantic) — When the justices of the United States Supreme Court confer Friday morning to consider new cases they will have the opportunity to accept for review a dispute that tests not just the meaning of their own recent Sixth Amendment precedent but the viability of a major new policy initiative implemented this summer… Read more »

December 3, 2013

Debra Saunders: No Mercy From Obama This Thanksgiving

Another Thanksgiving has passed without a presidential commutation for Clarence Aaron, who, at age 24, was sentenced to life without parole for a first-time nonviolent drug conviction in 1993. President Barack Obama has the unfettered power to pardon ex-cons and commute the sentences of federal inmates. Yet this term, he has used that power to… Read more »

December 2, 2013

Washington Post: Obama Neglects His Power to Pardon

(Washington Post editorial) — “With the power vested in me, I grant Popcorn full reprieve from a future of stuffing and cranberry sauce.” — President Obama, Wednesday AT LEAST MR. OBAMA is aware that he possesses the power of clemency. Unpardonably, though, with the exception of the silly Thanksgiving ritual in which he spares a turkey by executive order,… Read more »

November 27, 2013

FAMM Statement: Thanksgiving Calls for More than Turkey Pardons from President Obama

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, FAMM founder and president Julie Stewart issued the following statement calling on President Barack Obama to grant more commutations (sentence reductions) to federal prisoners, rather than merely issuing another the annual presidential pardons to Thanksgiving turkeys: “This administration has taken a bold stand against excessive mandatory minimum sentences for nonviolent offenders,… Read more »

November 26, 2013

Thankful, but Outraged

This year, like most years, I’ll be spending my Thanksgiving back home in Chicago with my parents and my grandmother. We’ll cook and talk and eat together. But while I am enjoying the comforts of home, I’ll spend some time thinking about Clarence Aaron and his family. I thought Clarence would be out of prison by… Read more »