Lee says there’s enough support in Congress to pass bipartisan criminal justice reform bill

Sen. Mike Lee is confident if a sweeping proposal to overhaul the federal criminal justice system makes it to a floor vote in Congress, it will pass.

Lee told Bloomberg News on Tuesday that there’s enough support to pass the bill in the current lame duck session of Congress, but he’s not sure if Republican leadership will bring the bill up for a vote.

“(Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell) has not assured it,” said Lee. “A few weeks before recess, he said if we could get enough support for it and get into the mid to high 60’s, we would have a vote after the election. We are there.”

Vice President Mike Pence and President Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner lobbied Republicans on Capitol Hill Tuesday to boost support for the bill. The proposal boosts rehabilitation efforts for prisoners in federal custody and gives judges more leniency when sentencing nonviolent offenders.

A bipartisan coalition, including President Trump and liberal groups, is pushing hard for passage of the measure.

“Most people who go to prison will eventually get out,” added Lee. “When they get out we want them not to commit more crimes. We want to lower the rate of recidivism. This bill has incentives that would convince a lot of inmates to get job training and education so that, when they do get out, they become productive members of the workforce.”