Why are Republican legislators in Santa Fe laser-focused on harsh crime bills that don’t actually prevent crime?
House Republicans vowed before the legislative session started to ram through a number of so-called “tough on crime” bills. And they’ve kept their promise, passing almost all of their failed policies through the House.
The problem is, antiquated policies like mandatory teen curfews and mandatory three-strikes laws (two of House Republicans biggest priorities) are being repealed all over the country because they simply don’t reduce crime.
(A key Republican Senator who’s a lawyer and knows the impact of these laws first-hand has even called them “draconian” and “a step backwards.”)
Investments in crime prevention, drug treatment, and behavioral health services get at the root of criminal activity and reduce crime in the long run.
But House Republicans like Nate Gentry, Sarah Maestas Barnes, Paul Pacheco, Andy Nuñez and others are more interested in playing politics than passing effective policies.
Now, these failed policy ideas are in the Senate where their fiscal impacts need to be more diligently examined. Senators have the duty to perform the due diligence on these bills and that’s exactly what they’re doing.
They’re getting committee assignments, moving through the established processes, and have plenty of time to be debated.
But in a sign of just how political this all is for Republicans, a drumbeat of derision and negativity is being hurled at Senate Majority Leader Michael Sanchez and other Democratic Senators for not immediately passing these failed policies.
There’s more than one way to make New Mexico secure. Democratic Senators, like the ones listed below, are balancing prevention with incarceration and taking a broad view of the problems at hand instead of using recent tragedies for political gain.
Here are just a few of the proactive bills they’ve introduced:
- Background check reporting for firearms (Sen. Ivey-Soto)
- Adequately fund public schools (Sen. Soules)
- REAL ID fix (Sen. Ivey-Soto)
- Expand lottery scholarship eligibility (Sen. Soules)
- Development training for veterans (Sen. Sanchez)
Take action! Call or email the Senators below.
Tell them you appreciate them performing the due diligence that’s needed on the bills they’re receiving from the House.
We need to know the true fiscal impacts of putting more and more people into prison like these bills are bound to do (especially with how little new revenue we have).
These Senators know that there can be a compromise between the House’s knee-jerk, “lock ’em up” agenda and the pressing need to reform our criminal justice system.
Make sure they know you support them.
Sen. Michael Sanchez
Sen. Daniel Ivey-Soto
Sen. Bill Soules