Criminal Justice

The criminal justice system at both the national and local level consists of law enforcement agencies, courts with judges and attorneys and corrections from community-release programs to maximum-security prisons.  After decades of increasing the nation's prison population, however, many states are looking for less costly alternatives for punishing nonviolent offenders. The rise of DNA testing as a forensic tool, and the subsequent release from death row of inmates wrongly convicted, has fueled the movement to abolish the death penalty with Connecticut becoming the 17th state abolished capital punishment in April 2012. Overall crime rates have been trending downward for more than a decade for a variety of reasons from better policing and social programs to an aging population, according to experts.  That in turn has reduced the potency of crime as an issue for politicians campaigning on their toughness on criminals.  And with the economy in crisis, pollsters are finding the public more concerned about jobs than crime.

 

Related Legislation

Gambling

Allowed casinos on American Indian reservations, Las Vegas-style casinos in the rest of the state, and slot machines at… more »
 
 

Texas (change)

 
Republican Rick Perry is Governor of Texas. Two Republicans represent Texas in the U.S. Senate, and Texas has 32 representatives in the U.S. House: 20 Republicans and 12 Democrats.
 
Offices & Officials

Governor: Rick Perry
Lieutenant Governor: David Dewhurst
Attorney General: Greg Abbott