TodayGov. John Bel Edwards released a statement on the new Louisiana State University poll that shows 70 percent of Louisianans approve of the state’s bipartisan criminal justice reform. The largest growth has been among Republicans with an increase of 14 percentage points and 12 percentage points increase among Independents. 

“Criminal justice reform is proof of the good that can happen when we come together and put people over politics,” said Gov. Edwards. “That is exactly what happened in 2017 when I signed into law the historic reform legislation that happened because of strong support from Republicans, Democrats and Independents. In addition to losing our title as the incarceration capital of the nation, the first year of our efforts have yielded promising results, including more than double the projected savings. As a result, we’re reinvesting 70 percent of the savings into proven programs that reduce recidivism and support victims; there is better access to these programs; the caseload for probation and parole officers has improved dramatically, which enables agents to provide more supervision to those who need it; and there is increased public safety. Criminal justice reform is working in our state just as it has in other Southern states, and we have every reason to believe that the improvements will continue.”        

Key findings from the study: 

  • The percentage of Louisiana residents who approve of the state’s criminal justice reforms is up from 61 percent in 2018 to 70 percent today.
  • This growth is especially strong among Republicans (+14 percentage points) and independents (+12 percentage points).

The complete study can be found here.