Voters in Connecticut selected Ned Lamont as the state’s next governor and rejected a legislative incumbent and Attorney General candidate who ran on an anti-criminal justice reform platform. The following is a reaction from the ACLU of Connecticut’s Smart Justice campaign.
“The results of this election are proof that Connecticut voters support smarter justice policies and reject backward-on-crime and silent-on-justice approaches. With the election of Ned Lamont and the rejection of two of the state’s loudest critics of justice reform, Connecticut voters have sent a strong message that they expect candidates to propose smart justice policies and reject failed 1990s-era scare tactics,” said Anderson Curtis, Smart Justice field organizer for the ACLU of Connecticut.
“People directly impacted by the justice system have been fighting for years to end mass incarceration and eliminate racial disparities in the justice system, and our work continues. ACLU Smart Justice Connecticut will advocate for smarter justice policies to be a priority in the first 100 days of our state’s new governor and legislature,” said Gus Marks-Hamilton, Smart Justice field organizer for the ACLU of Connecticut.
“When Governor Malloy made criminal justice reform a centerpiece of his work, the rest of the country followed. Today, we have proof that Connecticut voters want to see our state follow through on its potential to end mass incarceration and eliminate racial disparities in the justice system. Changes in the legislature and governorship mean that our state is poised to remain at the forefront of justice. We will work to hold our state’s new governor and legislature accountable for carrying Connecticut’s progress toward creating racial justice and ending mass incarceration forward,” said David McGuire, executive director of the ACLU of Connecticut.
From July through November, the ACLU of Connecticut’s Smart Justice campaign visited every gubernatorial debate, traveled to every gubernatorial candidate’s campaign office, and called and emailed every gubernatorial candidate asking them to embrace smarter justice policy proposals. Statewide Smart Justice polling released in September show the majority of Connecticut voters believe it is important to reduce incarceration in the state. Neither the ACLU of Connecticut nor its Smart Justice campaign endorse or oppose candidates for elected office.
The ACLU of Connecticut’s Smart Justice campaign is an initiative dedicated to reducing the state’s prison and jail population by 50 percent and eliminating racial disparities in the justice system. ACLU Smart Justice Connecticut is led by formerly incarcerated people, because the campaign is grounded in the knowledge that the people closest to the problem of mass incarceration are closest to the solution.