As most Americans have come to realize, the War on Drugs has been a phenomenal disaster. Triggering the arrest of millions of otherwise law-abiding Americans, it has contributed to an unprecedented pattern of mass incarceration, one which unfairly targets the poor and people of color. Despite its success in locking up drug offenders en masse, the War on Drugs has failed to reduce either drug use or the harms of drugs, amounting to one of the greatest policy failures of the past century.
More than ever, Americans need a leader with the political courage to put an end to the drug war.
While Hillary Clinton may not speak openly about her stance on the War on Drugs, her record on criminal justice issues reveals her as a staunch proponent of tough-on-crime legislation. In the 1990s, she favored punitive sentences to deter people from violating the law, including “Three Strikes” measures that proved not only disastrous but unconstitutional as well: