Governor GWB has been riding the wave of a national trend towards lower, and lower, crime statistics. Of course GWB is attempting to take credit for lower levels of crime in Texas but the truth is that crime is down much more in other parts of the country then it is in Texas. I believe that the credit for the reduction in all categories of crime on a nation wide basis belongs to the Clinton/Gore administrations efforts beginning with the '94 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act. The Clinton/Gore administration's legislation has make, and has attempted to make, the following improvements (Some of these initiatives have not been funded because of Republican opposition):
It put 100,000 more police on the street paid for by the federal government.
It strengthened community policing (COPS).
Creation of Police Corps.
Developed the Safe Schools Initiative.
Created Empowerment Zones and Enterprise Communities.
It improved community involvement in fighting crime.
Expanded the federal death penalty by adding 50 new offenses. Personally, I am opposed to the death penalty.
Stronger penalties for crimes.
Habeas corpus reform that limits appeals.
It added new background checks for gun buyers with the Brady law.
It added a new assault weapons ban.
Since 1993 the Justice Department budget has risen by 88%.
The booming economy and lower unemployment that is the result of the Democrats 1993 budget (increased taxes on the rich, among other things) has helped to reduce the crime rate.
Following are some of the results of the Clinton/Gore administration's efforts:
Overall gun violence has gone down 35% since 1992.
From 1993 to 1996 murders down by 20%.
1999 year marks the eighth consecutive year of a big decrease in serious crime nationwide.
Prison inmate populations increased to 1,948,600 in 2000. (94% male, 48% black, 19% Hispanic, 65% high school drop-outs, 71% for non-violent crimes, 30% for drug offenses, 29% for property offenses, and 57% under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the offense).
More people are on parole and probation.
Following are some additional things that we could do to bring crime down even more:
Pass "Hate Crimes" legislation.
More local prosecutors.
More schools counselors.
More education about gun safety and gun laws.
Develop new smart gun technologies.
Require gun locks.
Ban large ammo clips.
Extend background checks to gun shows.
Require photo ID's for gun buyers.
Following are some of the things GWB has helped to change as Governor of Texas, several of which I think are misguided:
In 1995 he signed a law that allows Texans to carry a concealed weapon. Polls show that most of the American people are against this type of concealed weapons law.
In 1997 he signed a bill that permits anyone to walk in a place of worship with a concealed gun unless clearly posted signs say not to.
He signed legislation that keeps Texas cities from suing gunmakers for the damage their products have caused.
After a tragic shooting at a Fort Worth church GWB called for tougher enforcement of existing laws rather then any new laws.
In 1995 he toughened the juvenile justice laws so that now juveniles are serving longer and tougher sentences. He lowered the age to 14 that juveniles can be tried as adults. He increased the penalties for all graffiti offenses. He added automatic detention for any juvenile caught illegally carrying a firearm.
From 1995 to 1998 the juvenile detention system capacity in Texas was tripled.
GWB has personally participated in knocking down ten crack houses in three different cities.
In 1995 he signed a bill that speeds up death penalty appeals so Texas can kill more people faster.
He opposed the "James Byrd Hate Crimes Legislation" in Texas.
To be fair, there are some other things in the criminal justice area that Governor GWB has done that I am in complete agreement with, but I will let GWB tell you about those things on his web site.
The Republicans in the U.S. Congress, and the NRA's, has been using some propaganda to deceive the American people about what the Democrats really stand for on gun rights issue that I feel needs some explaining. First, Democrats are for common sense gun control legislation that keeps guns out of the hands of criminals, the mentally ill, and children. They are also for increasing the accountability for those who misuse guns. The Democrats are not for banning guns, or taking away our constitutional right to bear arms, as the NRA and many of the Republicans in the U.S. Congress would have you believe. Don't be fooled by the Republican's tricks on this issue or any of the other issues.
The information on the GWB Right House web site is for issue advocacy only.
Copyright by CMF Enterprises 2000, P.O. Box 1935, Frisco, TX 75034