Bernie Sanders Declares War On America’s Corrupt For Profit Prison System With New Bill


bernie sanders 2016 koch brothers

Bernie Sanders is striking back at corporate America’s prison industrial complex with a new bill that abolishes for profit prisons.

In a statement, Sanders discussed his new legislation:

It is clear to most Americans that we need major reforms in our broken criminal justice system. We need to end the tragic reality that the United States has more people in jail than any other country on earth, and that the people being incarcerated are disproportionately black and Hispanic. We need to take a hard look at why the rate of recidivism in this country is so high and why we are not developing successful paths back to civil society for those who serve prison time. Further we need to end, once and for all, the disgraceful practice of corporations profiting from the incarceration of Americans.


As a nation, our goal must be to do everything we can to create the conditions that prevent mass incarceration. At a time when we are spending $50 billion a year on our correctional system, it makes a lot more sense to me to be investing in jobs and education for our young people than in more and more jails. Not only can we prevent thousands of lives from being destroyed, we can save billions of taxpayer dollars. Locking people up is a lot more expensive than schools.

Overall, we need bold change in our criminal justice system. A good first step forward is to start treating prisoners as human beings, not profiting from their incarceration. Our emphasis must be on rehabilitation, not incarceration and longer prison sentences. The basic decisions regarding criminal justice and public safety are, without a doubt, the responsibility of the citizens of our country and not the investors in private corporations.

My legislation will eliminate federal, state and local contracts for privately run prisons within 2 years. It will reinstate the federal parole system. It will increase oversight and eliminate the overcharging of prisoners by private companies for banking and other services. It will end the mandatory quota of immigrants detained. It will require ICE to improve the monitoring of detention facilities and eliminate private detention centers within 2 years.

The private prison industry makes money by keeping individuals incarcerated. The motivation in a for-profit prison system has nothing to do with the common good or the benefit of society. Private prisons make money for their corporate owners by keeping as many people locked up as cheaply as possible.

A study from the University of Wisconsin found that private prisons keep inmates locked up longer to boost profits. The extra time that inmates are locked up costs taxpayers an average of $3,000 more per prisoner.

The for-profit prison industry is one of the main reasons why the nation’s criminal justice system is in desperate need of reform. Sen. Sanders is correct. Republicans have been lining corporate pockets for decades by privatizing prisons, but it needs to stop now.

The nation needs real criminal justice reform, and the first step in fixing the broken system is abolishing private prisons.

45 Replies to “Bernie Sanders Declares War On America’s Corrupt For Profit Prison System With New Bill”

  1. …from the time for profit prisons first appeared, I knew they would be trouble…
    …I don’t care which Democratic Candidate shuts the “Fk”ers down…somebody needs to!!!

  2. When will Bernie stop being pure awesome?? If I were running, this is exactly the kind of thing I’d be making issues out of too.

  3. Exactly. How could anyone think for-profit prisons would NOT be trouble? I never stop thinking about that Judge that got convicted of accepting a couple million in “finder’s fees” from a for-profit juvenile facility. I can’t imagine how anyone could think that’s not the obvious kind of outcome.

  4. Third World Country bullshit.

    “With extraordinary access, FRONTLINE takes you to the epicenter of the raging debate about prison reform. “Prison State” follows the lives of four individuals in Kentucky’s criminal justice system, as the state tries to interrupt the cycle of mass incarceration.”

  5. The awesome thing about Bernie is that he’s been pushing for better policies for 30 years or more.
    I have no doubts about his commitment to progressive policies.

  6. I’m really tired of hearing that private companies are better than govt-run institutions. There’s a place for both. Keep it up Bernie! Does Ted Cruz go to work anymore?

  7. While not a Clinton supporter other than correct the record I don’t demand no one return any money because to win you have to have money and if you want to live in never never land then so be it. That’s why you people never wins elections with your pure as snow attitude

  8. What my post means is that if Hillary is elected POTUS she will be beholden to the private prison industry. I want a POTUS beholden to the people, not corporate interests. That POTUS should be Bernie Sanders.

  9. So anyone who gives you money you are beholden to? If that’s the case wouldn’t Sanders be beholden to the sugar industry who with their products is a major cause of obesity and diabetes? You make no sense

  10. Dj, they are funding her campaign. Therefore Hillary has no credibility on this issue whatsoever. Sure she’s going to pay lip service to this to placate the sheeple, but in the end the status quo will prevail.

  11. So riddle me this if prisons are a states issue what can the federal government do to shut them down?

  12. What record? Naming post offices? Clinton liberal scorecard is right up there with Sanders so before you tell someone to check the record maybe you need to some checking yourself

  13. I’m voting for the democratic nominee. Period! The only thing I can say for sure is, I won’t consider any republican and I’ll make up my own mind. Let the republicans do their own dirty work.

  14. Has Bernie Sanders ever put a bill forward to abolish the for-profit prison system before? At any time in his 25+ years in Congress? No? Then this is just pandering to the Black and Latino community who, as he well knows, are disproportionately incarcerated compared to White Americans, most times for lesser crimes.

    This is just another Sanders strategy to appeal to the minority community since he’s done such a poor job so far, and he, unlike his supporters, knows that after New Hampshire and Iowa, he’s going to hit a wall in South Caroline and Nevada if he can’t win the minority vote.

  15. To all you people who are begging for a Hillary, Bernie fight calm the beatle juice down. For myself i would love to see a president Sanders and dont want to see a president with a R before his/her name. So sure Sanders would be the best fit, but baring a miracle i will be voting for Hillary. Not because i agree with all her positions, becuase i dont. But because i refuse to let a republican get into the whitehouse and for all you pure as snow people, grow up. You will never in life get all you want and nor should you.

  16. Mind-Blowing!
    Radio Show interviewing Owners of new gimmick: TIME-TRACKS.

    Going through Presidential Candidates they reported THE ONE Person with most superior Tracks Is…Bernie Sanders!

    You can compare various candidates and then look at Bernie Sanders Time Tracks!

    None of the GOP looked outstanding, except for Trump and Carly Fiorina (they picture her taking VP Slot)

    Check it out. Hope it’s still up!

  17. Don’t miss Bernie Sanders at the Greensboro Coliseum, North Carolina this Sunday, Sept. 13th. Doors open at 6 p.m.

    Here’s a cool video of snippets from his mega size rallies in Portland, Seattle and Los Angeles.

    See for yourself why Bernie Sanders is a political rock star!

  18. “When will Bernie stop being pure awesome??”
    January 21st, 2025. That’s when his second term as POTUS would end.
    Then Bernie would continue to be pure awesome as a private citizen again…

  19. Suga, I didn’t peg you for the type to believe in conspiracy theories… that site talks about brainwaves occuring in 2017 for Hillary… and is all about UFOs and telepathy… so she will be popular in 2017s brain waves… ok then. That settles it.

    His most recent show:

    2nd Half: Paranormal researcher and philosopher Jonathan Zap reveals how telepathy, UFOs, and near death experiences (NDEs) can be explained and why he believes that NDEs are not a brain-based event, but a non-local event. He’ll also address the amazing technological advances toward singularity, which will lead to a quantum shift in human consciousness.

  20. Sorry Suga, the last remark was still under “reply to Suga” – I should have hit cancel reply and posted to the thread.

  21. Wait. The Politico moderation crew deleted my reply to “djchefron” because —- what, exactly? Because I dared to type for the public the name of a town in Arkansas???

    I mean, I don’t do right-wing politics and I’m certainly not into anything the GOP supports. However, I hoped with all my heart that Hillary would be elected rather than Barack Obama because of that town’s name and what it conjures. The collusion between people of, allegedly, differing political parties would have expose the “two-party” system for being what it too often is – two sides of the same coin.

    And for THAT my comment was deleted?! The person or people who removed my comment should be ashamed.

    Oh, and don’t worry moderators, if you delete this comment all of Twitter will see it instead.

  22. I deleted because you are a dumbass Mena? Cocaine Murder type some more bullshit like that and I will ban you dumb hick ass

    BTW in are a liar .I n your original pst you insunate that Clinton had credibillty problems because of some made up Jerry Fawell bullshit

  23. That’s nonsense, Hillary has been saying the same thing as Bernie on prisons. Don’t try bashing another great democrat in order to build up the other. We have enough false information on our candidates coming from the GOP led media. If you do your research you see how close Bernie and Hillary are on the issues that matter to us. Neither Bernie or Hilary are bashing each other and I love them both for it. They’d be a dream team. But we can’t allow any division in our party. We need to protect our candidates from the right wing slander, no matter who your choice is. No ammunition given to the tea thugs, the press is allowing enough bogus GOP/Teabagger talking points. Support your candidate, but don’t spread the b.s. Republican talking points. We need to remain united in victory in 2016. Let’s show the right we won’t break rants or use their blatant lies against each other. Democrats 2016! Take back the floor and senate. Let’s do it with grace.

  24. Bernie has some great ideas, from a liberal perspective. I’ve been in favor of his proposals for most of my life. But I’m realistic enough to know that he has ZERO chance of getting virtually any of them enacted. If you want to feel good about yourself, support Bernie. If you want real change, you won’t get it with Bernie.

  25. No, I will take a Democrats or bust pledge. But I won’t play the Republican game “to divide and conquer”. I have too much respect for Hilary and Bernie. They aren’t attacking each other, just getting the Democrats issues out there.

  26. No. I will work my ass off to help get Bernie Sanders the nomination, and win the White House. However whoever the democratic nominee is will have my vote. The republicans cannot be allowed to win this election period.

    You know our country is on the wrong track when citizens’ freedom becomes bad for business and the states are siding with businesses by locking up more citizens.
    Several years ago I wrote about the plague that’s called the private prison industry. A lot has changed since then, but not for the betterment of the American people. States aren’t filling enough beds for the private prison companies, so now, taxpayers are being sued because there aren’t enough criminals.
    These aren’t frivolous lawsuits, either. Several government agencies knowingly signed contractswith private prison companies that guarantee a minimum occupancy or quota. In fact, In the Public Interest has found that nearly 2/3 of the contracts have quota clauses. In California, for example, there is a guarantee of 70 percent occupancy and in Arizona, nearly 100 percent.

  28. Destroy ’em Bern. What is going on in America’s prison system is an abomination. Also what is going on in it’s economy, government, education system, healthcare system, military, etc. You are America’s last hope of making a comeback.

  29. America’s Slave Empire
    Posted on Jun 21, 2015
    By Chris Hedges
    Three prisoners—Melvin Ray, James Pleasant and Robert Earl Council—who led work stoppages in Alabama prisons in January 2014 as part of the Free Alabama Movementhave spent the last 18 months in solitary confinement. Authorities, unnerved by the protests that engulfed three prisons in the state, as well as by videos and pictures of abusive conditions smuggled out by the movement, say the men will remain in solitary confinement indefinitely. The men have become symbols of a growing resistance movement inside American prisons. The prisoners’ work stoppages and refusal to co-operate with authorities in Alabama are modeled on actions that shook the Georgia prison system in December 2010. The strike leaders argue that this is the only mechanism left to the 2.3 million prisoners across America. By refusing to work—a tactic that would force prison authorities to hire compensated labor or to induce the prisoners to retur…

  30. This approach should be applied to each and every one of the programs created to privatize schools specifically and others that received some support for the purpose of supporting an already greedy business community. Some businesses have, in my opinion, have been fairly open and honest in their efforts to stay within reasonable bounds of earning money, caring for their employees, giving back to the communities and in general following the image of a truly democratic and loving country. I realize that there exceptions to every rule and that there will always be those whose stretch the intent of laws provided to protect the inhabitants of this country. At some point the electorate will awaken and begin the process of cleaning out the riff raff in the process of guiding this country back to what it claims to be. I applaud Senator Sanders. I don’t personally know him well enough to call him by his first name.

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