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Ryan Wants to Vote on Criminal Justice Reform This Year

Speaker Paul Ryan hinted Monday that the House could consider an overhaul of the nation’s criminal justice system after the November election.

The Wisconsin Republican, speaking to the Economic Club of New York about House Republicans’ 2017 agenda, said it is his goal for Congress to act criminal justice reform this year. Ryan had previously planned to have the House take up the issue in September, but those plans were revised so the GOP conference could undergo “member education” on the topic.

Republicans in Congress are split on overhauling the nation’s sentencing laws. 

“I’m trying to get criminal justice reform done this session of Congress,” Ryan said. “We’re looking at how we’re getting that done because we’ve gotten six bills out of the Judiciary Committee already. So that train is on the tracks, and I’m hoping we can get that done sooner rather than later.”

With the House likely to recess as soon as it completes work on a stop-gap funding measure, criminal justice changes would likely come up when Congress reconvenes after the November elections.

The Senate’s companion effort on criminal justice also has yet to see floor time.