Senate Committee to Hold Crack-Powder Cocaine Hearing Wednesday – TalkLeft: The Politics Of Crime

The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing Wednesday on the disparity of the crack/powder cocaine sentencing laws. You will be able to watch it live, online. Sentencing Law and Policy has more here.

The witnesses include Miami Police Chief John Timoney, who will be arguing the stiffer penalties for crack are unjust.

In the “personal story” segment, Cedric Parker will be testifying for FAMM about his sister and the impact of unjust federal crack cocaine sentences on their family.

The Sentencing Project’s Marc Mauer has provided written testimony to the committee.

Former drug czar Asa Hutchinson will also testify. Hutchinson was Administrator of the DEA under former President George W. Bush. He too believes the disparity is unfair. He and J.C. Watts wrote this op-ed in the Washington Times.

U.S. District Court Judge Reggie Walton will testify. Here’s his testimony (pdf)from 2007 urging that the two level decrease Congress implemented be made retroactive.

Another witness: U.S. Sentencing Commission Acting Chair Richard Hinojosa. He too believes the disparity is unfair. Here is his testimony (pdf) in 2008 before a House Judiciary Committee subcommittee urging that the disparity be 20:1 instead of 100:1.

The remaining witness is Assistant AG Lanny Breuer. Since Obama has called for an end to the disparity, I assume the DOJ witness he’s sending will as well.