Rep. Ellison Reintroduces RESET Act
WASHINGTON – Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) reintroduced the Reclassification to Ensure Smarter and Equal Treatment Act of 2017 known as the RESET Act. This bipartisan and bicameral legislation would reclassify specific low-level, non-violent drug possession felonies as misdemeanors, eliminate the distinction between crack and powder cocaine for sentencing, and ensure that food products containing drugs are weighed fairly. Senators Rand Paul (R-KY) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) introduced the original bill in the United States Senate.
“After billions of dollars spent and hundreds of thousands of lives ruined, our country has nothing to show for the ‘War on Drugs’ than a generation of prisoners and victims of police violence. More than a million and a half Black men are missing from our society because of our broken criminal justice system.
“Since the 1980’s we’ve made some progress on making our sentencing laws and criminal justice administration less cruel. We can’t afford to backwards to a time where getting caught with a gram of pot meant 10 years in prison.
“We need to start to repair the communities our drug laws have ravaged, and work to build a country where every young person can succeed – whether they live in the wealthy suburbs or a low-income community. This bill will help make the punishments for non-violent and low-level drug offenses fairer and more just. And that’s a good first place to start.