On August 9, 1976—two years to the day that President Richard Nixon resigned from as President of the United States—Charles Colson founded Prison Fellowship. The former Nixon adviser, who spent seven months in a federal correctional facility after pleading guilty to Watergate-related charges, left prison a changed man, committed to “remembering the prisoner” and honoring the God-given value and potential of every person affected by crime and incarceration.
Speaking in front of an eager crowd at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, DC, on June 20, U.S. Senator John Cornyn of Texas laid out his vision for criminal justice reform. Cornyn, the current majority whip of the U.S. Senate, has worked hard to steer the Republican Party towards supporting a comprehensive reform of the criminal justice system, while also building coalitions with like-minded pro-reform individuals across the aisle.
The following commentary originally appeared on the Breakpoint website.
It’s no secret that most Americans disapprove of the way Congress is doing its job, and by “most” I mean an overwhelming majority. The reason most give is that Congress doesn’t seem to get much done.
For all the contentious, divisive issues that have recently dominated national headlines, there is one policy issue that continues to receive broad, bipartisan support—the need for meaningful sentencing and corrections reforms in the United States. And with new efforts by President Obama to highlight the need for changes, the time may be right for a significant transformation in how we view prisons and the men and women inside them.