Sen. Tom Cotton’s presidential positioning of late has included tough-on-crime rhetoric: The U.S. doesn’t need justice reform but to put still more people in prison.
Politico reports that the head of a union that represents 40,000 guards and others in federal prisons has fired back.
“As the president of a council made up of frontline law enforcement employees, I found these comments to be incredibly disrespectful to the people who endanger their lives every day so our communities may know peace,” Eric Young, the president of the union, wrote to Cotton in a May 23 letter obtained by POLITICO.
Young wrote, for example, that high-security prisons have a 32 percent overcrowded rate, and medium-security facilities are 47 percent overcrowded. The union added: “Given these statistics, it’s hard for me to understand why you would think our country has a problem with ‘under-incarceration.’”
He also said: “I ask that before you make any further decisions or remarks you consider what impact they might have on the men and women who risk their lives in overcrowded, understaffed federal prisons.”
Through a spokesman, you won’t be surprised to learn, Cotton doesn’t back off.