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Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Mannix Writes On Mandatory Minimums

Posted by Matt Davis on Wed, Aug 6, 2008 at 3:25 PM

Republican Senator Kevin Mannix has blogged today about the topic of last week's Brewhaha, his controversial mandatory minimum sentencing ballot measure that could mean harsh sentences for first time offenders, without the probability of drug treatment. His post is remarkable, if only for its Miltonian logic:

But, what taxpayers want is to save their own money - not to give the legislature the opportunity to spend public safety dollars on something else. Many studies have shown that failing to remove serious criminals from the streets costs citizens more per person than actively incarcerating the prisoners. That is, for each dollar the state spends incarcerating bad guys, citizens save more than that dollar in reduced society costs. The most obvious costs are the direct costs imposed on crime victims, but society pays other costs: security services, alarm systems, increased insurance rates, increased costs of goods as merchants recover for thievery, increased costs for identity theft protection programs, etc.
The problem being that the cost of incarcerating people under Mannix's new bill ranges from $200-$400m. So it's not going to save anybody any money. In fact, it's going to bankrupt the state. The only way you can stop it is by voting for the alternative measure, 1087, come November.

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