Obama Commutes Sentences For Drug Traffickers

obama-drugsOn Thursday this week the White House issued a press release saying that President Obama granted commutation to 72 federal inmates, a follow-up to the 98 commutations he granted last week. For his presidency, this is a total of 955 individuals, including 324 life sentences. 

Part of the press release takes a shot at mandatory minimum sentences and calls for Congress to enact “broader reforms needed to ensure our federal sentencing system operates more fairly and effectively in the service of public safety.”

Hogwash.

Obama has now commuted the sentence for more federal prisoners than all other presidents since World War II combined. Reportedly, all of the prisoners were convicted of nonviolent drug offenses but some also were convicted for nonviolent weapons offenses.

White House counsel Neil Eggleston said in the press release, “The President is committed to reinvigorating the clemency authority, demonstrating that our nation is a nation of second chances, where mistakes from the past will not deprive deserving individuals of the opportunity to rejoin society and contribute to their families and communities.”

More hogwash. The vast majority of these prisoners had their second chances and third chances and more. They should not get another. 

Looking just at the life sentences tells everything we need to know about these individuals. According to the White House press release, all the prisoners were convicted of nonviolent drug offenses. That means the 324 life sentences were for nonviolent drug offenses. And how does one merit a federal life sentence for a nonviolent drug offense? A report called Life Sentences in the Federal System, released by the United States Sentencing Commission providers the answer.

The drug trafficking guidelines specifically provide for a sentence of life imprisonment for drug trafficking offenses, but only where death or serious bodily injury resulted from the use of the drug and the defendant had been convicted previously of a drug trafficking offense. In some other drug trafficking cases, such as those involving very large quantities of drugs and where the offender has significant prior criminal history, the sentencing range can include life imprisonment, although only as the sanction at the top of the range.

So these 324 life sentences were most likely for drug traffickers whose product caused death or serious injury and they had been previously convicted of drug trafficking. These are the upstanding citizens that Obama has released onto our streets. 

An Oklahoma criminal is one of those who received a commutation from Obama earlier this year.  Chip J.W. Teague of Sallisaw, Oklahoma. Teague’s convictions include possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, three counts of possession of a firearm moved in interstate commerce, two counts of possession of a firearm during drug trafficking crime, two counts of manufacturing methamphetamine and maintaining a place for manufacture of methamphetamine. He was arrested during a traffic stop for drugs and weapons complaints and was out on bond when law enforcement officers received word that he was operating a drug lab. They searched his home after obtaining a warrant and found the lab, 134 grams of meth and numerous firearms so they arrested him again. Teague was convicted of numerous charges in May of 2000 and was sentenced to 41 years in prison. Obama commuted his sentence earlier this year and he will be back on the street in October, 2018.

A list of some of the individuals receiving commutations in October reads like a Who’s Who of drug traffickers and manufacturers. And these are the individuals that Obama is unleashing on society. I’m sure it would be very telling to follow-up on these scumbags in a few years and see how many of them went right back to the thug life. Most probably will. According to the National Institute for Justice, around 76.9% of drug offenders are rearrested within five years of release.

To my mind, these commutations are Obama giving the middle finger to America and deciding all on his own that he is going to overrule our justice system. The people’s representatives have passed laws setting sentences for drug offenses, but our laws mean nothing to him. So I suppose it should not be surprising that he is helping out the scum of society, who also care nothing for our laws.

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