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June 1, 2006

Sensenbrenner Booker fix drafted

I am in sentencing nerd nirvana here at the Miami FSG conference (though feeling a bit overwhelmed).  All the morning plenary sessions were absolutely amazing (especially a panel with the former and current USSC chairs), and I even got in a good one-liner during my panel.  I wish I could attend all the afternoon break-out sessions all at once and also be on-line and also talk to everyone I am meeting in the hallways. 

Helpfully, though I lack the energy to even try to live-blog the event, Anthony J. Colleluori, aka That Lawyer Dude, is trying to live blog here (and also maybe here later).  I'd be eager to link to anyone else writing about the conference, especially since my comments still are not working right.

The biggest news, beyond the release of new USSC stats that I'll discuss later, is that the Sennsenbrenner "topless guidelines" Booker fix bill is fully drafted and perhaps will soon be introduced.  It carries the audacious title "Sentencing Fairness and Equity Restoration Act of 2006."  Needless to say, I doubt I'm the only one put off by the suggestion that judges and others who have been working so hard after Booker to be fair and equitable need such a "Restoration Act" in the form of the proposed (harsh) mandatory minimum guidelines.  Put another way, I do not think topless guidelines fulfill any notion of restorative justice that I have ever heard of.

As of this writing, it seem uncertain exactly when (or even if) the Sensenbrenner bill will be introduced.  But the title alone suggests that polticial rhetoric and not policy realism will be the coin of the realm in any coming Booker fix debates.

June 1, 2006 at 03:42 PM | Permalink


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This bill was introduced today, September 29, 2006.

Posted by: John B. Webster | Sep 29, 2006 9:14:00 PM

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