In Crime & Politics, award-winning journalist Ted Gest gives readers the inside story of how crime policy is formulated inside the Washington beltway and state capitals, why the US has had cycle after cycle of ineffective federal legislation, and where promising reforms might lead in the future. Gest examines how politicians first made crime a national rather than a local issue, beginning with Lyndon Johnson's crime commission and the landmark anti-crime law of 1968 and continuing right up to such present-day measures as "three strikes" laws, mandatory sentencing, and community policing.

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