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Bill Clinton

In 2016 campaign, both parties want reform in justice system

On the campaign trail, among candidates of both parties, the idea of locking up drug criminals for life is a lot less popular than it was a generation ago.

The 2016 presidential race has accelerated an evolution away from the traditional tough-on-crime candidate. A Republican Party that's long taken a law-and-order stance finds itself desperate to improve its standing among minority voters, and Democratic candidates are also being drawn into national conversations on policing, drug crimes and prison costs.

With criminal justice issues intruding into election season, the "Just Say No" message of the Reagan administration and the "three strikes"...