- Associated Press - Thursday, August 4, 2016

President Barack Obama said at a press conference on Thursday that he shortened the sentences of more than 200 federal inmates this week to help cut the cycle of poverty and put families back together.

Almost all the 214 prisoners were serving time for nonviolent crimes related to drugs.

Obama says “the extraordinary rate of incarcerations of nonviolent offenders has created its own set of problems.” He says communities have been ravaged, leaving kids without parents and perpetuating the cycle of poverty.

His push to lessen the burden on nonviolent drug offenders reflects his long-stated view that the U.S. needs to remedy the consequences of decades of onerous sentencing requirements that put tens of thousands behind bars for too long.

Some of the inmates had firearms violations, but Obama says the administration tried to screen out violent inmates.

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