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It may still be 2022, but the 2023 Alabama Legislature will be going into session in just a few months.
The first session of a four-year legislative quadrennium is usually when lawmakers pass the most controversial bills.
Tax increases, legislative pay raises and other issues that state representatives and senators want to pass, but would like the public to forget are brought forward in the first year because it is more than three years away from their next elections.
Despite the spike in crime both nationally and in Alabama, there will be a strong push to weaken the criminal justice system in our state by some lawmakers and soft-on-crime groups.
There will be bills that force the parole board to release felons convicted of violent crimes early, repealing of the habitual felony offender law and other legislation that would have the effect of reducing sentences that have been imposed by the courts.
When Republican candidates for the legislature campaigned for office, none of them promised to open the prison doors and further endanger state citizens. Folks want laws that give more tools to law enforcement and prosecutors to put criminals in jail and keep them there, not less.
We will see soon enough if these newly elected lawmakers, along with some incumbents, go back on their commitments for public safety.
Paul DeMarco is a former member of the Alabama House of Representatives and can be found on Twitter at @Paul_DeMarco.