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Will Donald Trump or Joe Biden be better for criminal justice?

The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world. As riots have blazed across the country in response to police brutality, the ways presidential candidates approach criminal justice are increasingly coming under scrutiny. Will Donald Trump or Joe Biden be better for criminal justice?

Donald Trump will be better for criminal justice

Trump promises to restore law and order, and will take a tough approach on criminality. Biden has a poor track record on criminal justice, and is too weak on left-wing lawlessness.

Donald Trump will restore law and order

Trump strongly supports the police, and will bring an end to the violence breaking out in American cities. His tough-on-crime approach will bring down crime rates.

Donald Trump signed the First Step Act

This act reformed some sentencing laws, including mandatory-minimum sentences, and gave judges more discretion over low-level drug offences. Trump is responsible for this piece of criminal justice legislation that will benefit Americans.

Joe Biden has not condemned the recent wave of riots strongly enough

Biden has not been strong enough in his criticism of left-wing riots in American cities. He will limit law enforcement powers and will be responsible for a rise in crime.

Joe Biden has a poor track record on criminal justice

In his long career as Senator, Joe Biden has pushed a criminal justice agenda that is responsible for the mass incarceration and drug abuse crises. He cannot be trusted on this issue.

Joe Biden will be better for criminal justice

Biden will reform the police force and prioritise crime prevention. Trump has also failed to condemn police brutality and right-wing violence.

Joe Biden will reform the police force and the criminal justice system

Joe Biden will address the causes of crime and prevent crime, and will prioritise rehabilitation and redemption. He will review police training and wants to rebuild trust between communities and law enforcement.

Donald Trump is too silent on police brutality and right-wing violence

Trump is uncritical of police brutality and is lenient on right-wing violence and white supremacy. His tough-on-crime approach is selective and politically motivated.

Donald Trump has a poor record on criminal justice

Trump has called for an expansion of the death penalty, and has refused to apologise for calling for the Central Park Five to face the death penalty. He is rash and reckless on criminal justice issues.

Donald Trump and Joe Biden will be as good as each other for criminal justice

The current criminal justice system is a product of Republican and Democratic policies. Neither candidate wants to strongly challenge the status quo.

Joe Biden's record on criminal justice shows his outlook to be like Trump's

Joe Biden pushed for a tough-on-crime approach in the Democratic party and was a leading advocate of anti-drug legislation. Biden's past actions on criminal justice suggest he has much in common with Trump on this issue.

There is bipartisan interest in maintaining the status quo

The crises of mass incarceration, drug abuse and police violence in the US are the creations of Republicans and Democrats. There is political consensus against the radical overhaul of the criminal justice system necessary to address these issues.

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This page was last edited on Sunday, 11 Oct 2020 at 15:41 UTC