U.S. Senator and Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris has come a long way since she laughed off a question about supporting marijuana legalization in 2014. Harris wants to be known for having been a progressive prosecutor when she was Attorney General of California from 2011-2016, though Politifact says her “record is mixed.” Is she as bad as some are trying to say?
For example, this headline ran on the Washington, DC-based conservative website, the Free Beacon, back in February: “Kamala Harris Packed California Prisons With Pot Peddlers.” The subhead read: “At least 1,560 people were sent to state prisons for marijuana-related offenses between 2011 and 2016.”
The story itself doesn’t make the claim that Harris was in any way personally responsible for all those people being sent away, but only people who read past the subhead will realize that.
In actuality, most of those people are tried by city prosecutors or county district attorneys. For example, in 2017, there were 200,200 felony criminal filings in California courts. Deputy district attorneys in the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office prosecuted more than 70,000 of those.
Freedom Leaf Requests Data from California’s Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
Seeking clarity on these