Bill Bradley on Crime

Police in Daillo shooting judged based on race

Q: Comments on racial profiling?
A: The first thing I’d do is make the Voting Rights Act permanent. Racial profiling is a deep and serious issue. It’s whether we can see deeper than skin color or an eye shape, an ethnicity, to the individual. The Amadou Diallo case [showed] how deeply racial profiling had seeped into the mind of those who were in the police department. a wallet in the hands of a black man would look like a gun.
Source: Democrat debate in Los Angeles Mar 1, 2000

Additional penalties for hate crimes based on race or gender

BRADLEY [to Gore]: There is an anti-hate crime bill pending before the Texas Legislature. It was a hate crime bill in the wake of the James Byrd murder and the Matthew Shepard murder and it said that there will be additional penalties for hate crimes based on race, gender, sexual orientation and disability. And the governor of Texas let it be known he did not want to see that bill come forward. I told the governor’s press corps that if I’m the nominee of the Democratic Party and he’s the nominee of the Republican Party, and he has failed to support this legislation, that I would make it an issue in the presidential campaign and I will.

GORE: I think it will be an issue in the presidential campaign and it should be. I met two weeks ago with Judy Shepard, the mother of Matthew Shepard. What suffering that family went through when that young man was crucified on a split-rail fence by bigots. Yes, we need hate crimes legislation. Those crimes are fundamentally different.

Source: Democrat debate in Los Angeles Mar 1, 2000

No mandatory sentencing for first-time minor drug offenders

GORE: [Regarding race-biased sentencing], the disparities between crack & powder cocaine are not justified by the scientific evidence. The practices of many law-enforcement agencies need to be changed.

BRADLEY: The issue of the criminal justice system is deeper than simply the death penalty. There is unequal justice in this country, not only racial profiling, not only crack cocaine, but also in terms of kids getting mandatory sentences for first-time non-violent drug use and being put away 20 years. That should not happen.

GORE: We should review of the kinds of penalty that are calculated under the [policy of] “three strikes and you’re out.” The focus ought to be on truly violent crime. We need to continue reducing the crime rate, and community policing is a good strategy. But we also need more prevention.

BRADLEY. This is a deeper moral issue for the country. We have to stop denying the plight of black Americans and the indignities that they’re experiencing.

Source: (X-ref from Gore) Democrat debate in Harlem, NYC Feb 21, 2000

Federal law should address racial profiling

Q: How would you keep crime down, but at the same time confront the problem of police brutality and racial profiling? A: I would issue an executive order that would eliminate racial profiling at the federal level. I would try to pass a law to get information gathered at local levels so that we can see how the police departments are acting. I would make sure that the Justice Department was involved and would say quite clearly that white Americans can no longer deny the plight of black Americans.
Source: Democrat debate in Harlem, NYC Feb 21, 2000

Combat terrorism with broad inter-agency approach

Q: How do you plan to address terrorist threats? A: [We need] an approach to terrorism that is across the board. It has to include the best intelligence in the world. It has to include a response if terrorism takes place, going after them wherever they are. It must also include a degree of honesty with the American people. But the key thing is to make sure that the government is organized in a way that you get support among all agencies aimed at countering terrorism.
Source: Town Hall Meeting, Nashua NH Dec 18, 1999

Urban future: transform; or we’ll abandon or encircle

Source: Time Present, Time Past, p. 377-378 Jan 8, 1997

Answer to crime is local, not federal

The Federal Crime Bill of 1994 was a fine piece of work.... Still, it dealt directly with only those 5% of the crimes committed that violate federal law. The answer to crime will be found closer to home. What Washington can do is call for a rebellion against violence and measure its progress. Joining together as citizens to stop violence requires us to see beyond color to self-interest furthered by civic action.
Source: Time Present, Time Past, p. 391 Jan 8, 1997

Wiretap & deport suspected terrorists; use taggants

Source: Project Vote Smart -- Voting Record Sep 12, 1996

Try teens as adults, but no death penalty

Source: Project Vote Smart -- Voting Record Nov 19, 1993

Voted in favor of death penalty & against appeals

Source: Project Vote Smart -- Voting Record Nov 17, 1993

Voted NO on limiting product liability punitive damage awards.

Approval of a limit on punitive damages in product liability cases.
Status: Conf Rpt Agreed to Y)59; N)40; NV)1
Reference: Conference Report on H.R. 956; Bill H. R. 956 ; vote number 1996-46 on Mar 21, 1996

Voted YES on restricting class-action lawsuits.

Restriction of class-action security lawsuits.
Status: Veto Overridden Y)68; N)30; P)1
Reference: H.R. 1058 passage over veto; Bill H.R. 1058 ; vote number 1995-612 on Dec 22, 1995

Voted NO on repealing federal speed limits.

Repeal federal speeding limits.
Status: Motion to Table Agreed to Y)64; N)36
Reference: Motion to table Lautenberg Amdt #1428; Bill S. 440 ; vote number 1995-270 on Jun 20, 1995

Voted NO on rejecting racial statistics in death penalty appeals.

Vote to express that the Omnibus Crime bill [H.R. 3355] should reject the Racial Justice Act provisions, which would enable prisoners appealing death penalty sentences to argue racial discrimination using sentencing statistics as part of their appeal.
Bill S 1935 ; vote number 1994-106 on May 11, 1994

  • Click here for definitions & background information on Crime.
  • Click here for policy papers on Crime.
  • Click here for SenateMatch answers by Bill Bradley.
  • Agree? Disagree? Voice your opinions on Crime in The Forum.
Other candidates on Crime: Bill Bradley on other issues:
NJ Gubernatorial:
Jim McGreevey
Richard Codey
Thomas Kean
NJ Senatorial:
Bob Torricelli
Douglas Forrester
Frank Lautenberg
Jon Corzine

George W. Bush
(Republican for President)
V.P.Dick Cheney
(Republican for V.P.)
Sen.John Kerry
(Democratic nominee for Pres.)
Sen.John Edwards
(Democratic nominee for V.P.)
Ralph Nader
(Reform nominee for Pres.)
Peter Camejo
(Reform nominee for V.P.)
David Cobb
(Green nominee for Pres.)
Michael Badnarik
(Libertarian nominee for Pres.)
Michael Peroutka
(Constitution nominee for Pres.)
2004 Senate Races:
(AK)Knowles v.Murkowski v.Sykes
(AL)Shelby v.Sowell
(AR)Holt v.Lincoln
(AZ)McCain v.Starky
(CA)Boxer v.Jones v.Gray
(CO)Coors v.Salazar v.Randall v.Acosta
(CT)Dodd v.Orchulli
(FL)Castor v.Martinez
(GA)Isakson v.Majette v.Buckley
(IA)Grassley v.Small v.Northrop
(IL)Obama v.Keyes
(IN)Bayh v.Scott
(KY)Bunning v.Mongiardo
(LA)John v.Vitter
(MD)Mikulski v.Pipkin
(MO)Bond v.Farmer
(NC)Bowles v.Burr
(ND)Dorgan v.Liffrig
(NH)Granny D v.Gregg
(NV)Reid v.Ziser
(NY)Schumer v.Mills v.McReynolds
(OH)Fingerhut v.Voinovich
(OK)Carson v.Coburn
(OR)Wyden v.King
(PA)Hoeffel v.Specter
(SC)DeMint v.Tenenbaum
(SD)Daschle v.Thune
(UT)Bennett v.Van Dam
(VT)Leahy v.McMullen
(WA)Murray v.Nethercutt
(WI)Feingold v.Michels
Civil Rights
Foreign Policy
Free Trade
Govt. Reform
Gun Control
Health Care
Homeland Security
Social Security
Tax Reform

Other Senators
House of Representatives
SenateMatch (matching quiz)
Senate Votes (analysis)
House Votes
Search for...