My wife Palmer and I are lifelong Tennesseans; and while we are proud of our state, we are also not blind to the fact that Tennessee has some real challenges with crime and the safety of our neighborhoods.
With two young children of our own, we are particularly attuned to the need for safe neighborhoods. Keeping citizens safe is one of the government’s most important jobs.
We need to ensure our law enforcement and judicial system have the support they need to be efficient and effective in using our tax dollars to keep us safe and rehabilitate criminals to ensure they never commit another crime again.
We also need to do a better job advocating for the rights of victims. Their pain, and the pain of their families, at the hands of criminals, should not be discounted in anything we do.
In Tennessee, 5,000 prisoners leave each year and re-enter society. Of those, 46% will return to prison within three years, where it costs twice the average Tennessean’s mortgage payment to house them. We must do a better job of rehabilitating prisoners through enhanced job training and partnerships with nonprofit, faith groups, and employers. We must use our taxpayer money sensibly to ensure our judicial system and police officers are able to prioritize stopping violent criminals who pose the most danger to our neighborhoods. We must also not be afraid, when our best efforts fail, to stand firm in our resolve to keep repeat violent offenders off of our streets – to protect the rights of those who were victimized – and the innocent.
As an attorney, I know that these problems must be solved. As a father, I know why it must be a top priority.
I promise to fight to:
- Focus on public safety as one of the most important roles of government
- Ensure our law enforcement agencies coordinate together to be the most efficient and effective
- Reform our justice system to use our taxpayer dollars most effectively in keeping the most dangerous criminals off the street while providing low-level offenders with high-quality job training to minimize the chances they return to a life of crime.