Nashville, TN — Today, Right on Crime and The American Conservative Union applaud the Tennessee General Assembly and Governor Lee for exhibiting bold leadership in the passage of HB 784, that expands and improves evidence-based alternative sentencing programs, and HB 785, the Reentry Success Act. The bills passed the Tennessee House on April 22, with Senate passage on April 28.

Each bill contains critical reforms aimed at improving outcomes for those on community supervision and those reentering from prison. Ultimately, the advancement of these reforms enhance public safety and save millions of tax dollars.

Former Governor of Texas and Right on Crime Signatory Rick Perry said, “Governor Bill Lee is making good on his promise to make Tennessee a leader in conservative criminal justice reform, and I commend legislative leaders for following his lead.”

Brooke Rollins, former Director of the U.S. Domestic Policy Counsel and TPPF Senior Advisor said,  “The federal government has more to learn from the states than the other way around, particularly where smart criminal justice policy is concerned. Conservatives across the country should take note and applaud the bold, conservative-led effort to improve public safety in Tennessee.”

Pat Nolan, Founder and Director Emeritus of the Nolan Center for Justice, based out of the American Conservative Union Foundation, noted, “These reforms apply commonsense conservative solutions to criminal justice. Prisons are for people we are afraid of but we have been filling them with folks we are just mad at. These bills will intelligently reserve costly prison beds for truly violent criminals and use the savings to prepare inmates to be good parents, good neighbors, and gainfully employed taxpayers. As a result Tennesseans will be safer, have fewer victims, and get more safety for every taxpayer dollar. That is conservativism at its best.” 

Right on Crime is a national campaign of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, in partnership with the American Conservative Union Foundation, that supports conservative solutions for reducing crime, restoring victims, reforming offenders, and lowering taxpayer costs. The movement was born in Texas in 2005, and in recent years, dozens of states such as Georgia, Ohio, Kentucky, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Louisiana, have led the way in implementing conservative criminal justice reforms.

The American Conservative Union (ACU) is the nation’s oldest organization representing grassroots conservatives throughout the United States. Founded more than five decades ago by William F. Buckley, ACU works to advance our core values of liberty, personal responsibility, and fiscal responsibility – all of which are impacted by criminal justice reform.