No other candidate in this race understands our criminal justice system like John does—or has fought as long or as effectively to address the problems in that system. He has a long history of public service as a federal prosecutor, joining the United States Attorney’s Office in 1987. In 2010, President Barack Obama appointed John to serve as the United States Attorney for Colorado—the state’s chief federal law enforcement officer. He worked for six years, throughout Colorado, becoming one of the longest-serving United States Attorneys in Colorado’s history. As United States Attorney for Colorado, John worked tirelessly to build strong relationships between federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies, as well as between law enforcement and the Colorado community.
Based on his deep experience as a federal government prosecutor, John believes that maintaining a criminal justice system rooted in fairness and proportionality is critical. That system should not only be consistent in the application of the law, but should treat all people fairly regardless of their race or class.
John has already spent years working effectively on solutions for meaningful criminal justice reform in Colorado and across the country. He was a leading voice in Barack Obama’s Administration, guiding criminal justice reform efforts and heading a national group of United States Attorneys selected to advise Attorney General Loretta Lynch on criminal justice reform. As a United States Senator, he will continue his efforts to effect meaningful change.
There is still much we can do to reform our criminal justice system with policies that make it smarter and more effective at responding to crimes, while also ensuring that Coloradans remain safe. Those reforms should include:
- Protecting public safety with a focus on tough sentences for the most severe, dangerous, and violent offenders. This approach reduces the incarceration rate of low-level, non-violent offenders in the federal system, while ensuring violent and predatory criminals are prevented from being repeat offenders.
- Using incarceration as just one of many tools to reduce violence and keep communities safe. Where appropriate, implement effective drug diversion and treatment programs as alternatives to lengthy incarceration.
- Empowering federal, state and local law enforcement departments to engage in community-oriented policing that builds trust in the communities they serve, takes community concerns into account, and proactively prevents crime before it takes place.
- Developing and implementing effective reentry programs to help afford the more than 600,000 ex-offenders that are released from prison every year a fair chance to reintegrate into society and simultaneously reduce re-offense rates.
As Colorado’s next United States Senator, John will leverage his vast experience with federal law enforcement to produce meaningful change and ensure that we have a fair criminal justice system that serves every American while protecting public safety.