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In a poll released by RightonCrime.com on Wednesday, 67 percent of Texas voters said they favor applying the same scrutiny to prison-system costs as to other government programs, and 80 percent favored requiring nonviolent, first-time offenders to work and pay restitution while on mandatory probation supervision.

Mr. Norquist, a conservative who, like Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, thinks the Pentagon should not be immune from cost cutting, said, “When we work to cut out a wasteful defense program, we always have a coalition of folks looking out for taxpayers and those who want the money for another plane or ship.”

Former American Conservative Union Chairman David A. Keene, also listed as a participant In the NAACP press release, told The Times late Wednesday that he does not intend to join the briefing. He said his affiliations were “misrepresented” in the NAACP statement.