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Hon. Richard L. Thornburgh, Attorney General, U.S. Department of Justice:


Prepared statement

Letter to Senator Biden, from Judy L. Whalley, Deputy Assistant Attor-

ney General, June 8, 1990...

Letter to Senator Metzenbaum, May 17, 1990.

Special Report: "Federal Criminal Cases, 1980–87," U.S. Department of

Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Statistics

Letter to Senator Biden in response to followup questions of the commit-

tee, June 20, 1990

Statement from the Solicitor General, May 16, 1990 ...............

Responses to followup questions submitted by:

Senator Grassley

Senator Leahy


Letters to Hon. Richard L. Thornburgh, Attorney General, U.S. Department

of Justice, from:

Senator DeConcini, July 13, 1989.

Senator Thurmond, October 26, 1989.

Enclosure: Letter to Senator Thurmond, from David W. Harwell,

Supreme Court of South Carolina, October 17, 1989

Letter to Senator Biden, from Judge Thomas W. Tanner, retired chairman,

Louisiana Sentencing Commission, April 3, 1990.

Statement of Judge Thomas W. Tanner, chairman, Louisiana Sentencing

Commission, on the Bureau of Justice Assistance's proposal affecting the

National Structured Sentencing Program

Letter to Kay Knapp, director, Institute for Rational Public Policy, Inc.,

Takoma Park, MD, from Kathleen Bogan, executive director, Oregon Crimi-
nal Justice Council, Portland State University, Portland, OR, March 13,


“Edward Byrne Memorial State and Local Law Enforcement Assistance Pro-

gram,” fiscal year 1990 discretionary program announcement, U.S. Depart-

ment of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Assistance

Appendix A: List of State Offices.

Appendix B: Application Forms

Letter to Senator Biden, from W. Lee Rawls, Assistance Attorney General,

U.S. Department of Justice, January 14, 1991 ..





Washington, DC. The committee met, pursuant to notice, at 9:40 a.m., in room SD226, Dirksen Senate Office Building, Hon. Joseph R. Biden, Jr. (chairman of the committee), presiding.

Present: Senators Biden, Kennedy, Metzenbaum, DeConcini, Leahy, Heflin, Kohl, Thurmond, Hatch, Simpson, Grassley, and Specter.


General, welcome. It is a pleasure to have you back with our committee. We are very pleased today that we begin the committee's consideration of the Justice Department's proposed authorization bill and a review of the Department's current activities.

Because the Attorney General's time is limited, my colleagues have agreed, along with the ranking member, that we will have no opening statements except for the ranking member and myself. And I am not going to make an opening statement but to say that there are several areas that each of us will pursue. In the interest of time, we have attempted to ascertain who among our colleagues have what particular interest to make sure that the waterfront basically gets covered.

As I indicated to you in our meeting late last week, I wanted to discuss with you the Bill Gray matter and your investigation of that matter. I also have a keen interest, among other things, in discussing with you the FBI budget and its role in the war on drugs, and also the matter relating to the FBI's role and the Department's role in the rural drug problem we face.

Last, we will be receiving, I am told, the crime statistics very shortly for last year, and the ultimate measure of whether or not we are making progress, whether we in Congress are doing enough to help and if the administration's strategy and ours makes enough sense, will not really be measured based upon, as you know better than I do, whether or not we can each indicate how much and what percentage our budgets increased last year or what percentage we increased your budgets the previous year, but whether or not we are making any progress on the street. Hopefully, we will have an opportunity to discuss that when those statistics are released.


Again, General, welcome. As I said, in the interest of time, I am not going to say any more. I will yield to my colleague from South Carolina, who does have an opening statement, and then we will get right to questions.


Mr. Chairman, I am pleased to be here today as the Judiciary Committee begins its hearings on the Department of Justice authorization request for fiscal year 1991. I am also pleased to be able to welcome Attorney General Richard Thornburgh. Although Mr. Thornburgh is not new to the Judiciary Committee, this is the first time he has appeared before this committee in connection with the authorization request.

Welcome, Mr. Attorney General. We are glad to have you here. Attorney General THORNBURGH. Thank you.

Senator THURMOND. Mr. Chairman, the Department of Justice has submitted a legislative proposal seeking passage of an authorization bill. The proposal requests the authorization of 19 Department appropriations in accordance with the funding levels requested by the President's budget. I understand that the Department will at a later time submit a proposal for permanent codification of the various financial management authorities that they have sought over the last several years.

Mr. Chairman, no authorization bill has been enacted since 1980, and I believe that we should give careful consideration to both of these proposals.

Mr. Chairman, I am sure that we will hear the Attorney General describe in some detail the enormous resources that the Department spends on the drug war. As I understand it, approximately 49 percent of the Department's budget is related to that effort. It involves funding for the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces, and the Asset Forfeiture Fund. In addition, other components of the Department are involved in the war on drugs—the FBI, the Marshals Service, and the Federal prison system, among others—each contributing in some way to this massive effort. These entities must be funded at levels that provide them with the necessary resources to carry out effectively their drug-related efforts.

In closing, while drug initiatives require substantial resources of the Department of Justice, other areas of concern may be discussed today. These include crime that is not related to drugs, such as white-collar crime. We may also examine the need for more prisons, protection of the environment, and the issue of more Federal judges.

Mr. Chairman, I look forward to hearing from Mr. Thornburgh this morning and to a discussion of the issues related to the Department's 1991 authorization request. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

The CHAIRMAN. Thank you very much. And I thank my colleague, Senator Specter, for being gracious enough to forgo his opening statement in the interest of time. I thank the Senator.

Senator SPECTER. No comment.

The CHAIRMAN. Let me get right to it, General. As we indicated, you and I discussed in my office-you were kind enough to come up last week.

As staff just pointed out to me, you might have a statement. And you do. You are not at all precluded from making a statement.

Attorney General THORNBURGH. I hate to rain on your parade. [Laughter.]

The CHAIRMAN. You were not a part of this deal. So why don't you go right ahead, General? I am so anxious to get on with this that I-and I have read your statement. I apologize. Please, proceed with your statement in any fashion that you would like, and the entire statement will be placed in the record if you wish not to read the whole thing.


GENERAL, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE Attorney General THORNBURGH. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I believe it might provide an appropriate setting for discussion and questions this morning if I were to briefly enter into the record some observations.

While I am here today in support of the Department of Justice's proposed authorization legislation, I think it is useful to begin by expressing our appreciation for the support for our activities that has been provided by Members of Congress, and in particular by members of this distinguished committee. We have worked closely together in the past, and I anticipate that we will continue to do so.

Responding to the direction which President Bush has given and the support which has been forthcoming from the Congress in the past 15 months, the Department of Justice has moved aggressively in fulfillment of our law enforcement mission. As set forth in this report, which we are submitting to President Bush and to the committee today, the Department has made great strides in our fight against drugs and other violent street crime, white collar crime, organized crime, and in dealing with civil rights, environmental, and antitrust violators.

The report highlights many of the specific achievements of the divisions and bureaus in the Department. It is a great record in which we take considerable pride and for which I salute the many dedicated employees of the Department. But even more than simply an inventory of accomplishments, it sets forth the broad themes and goals of this administration. As we witness and support the changes being undertaken in many parts of the world, where there is a hungering for adoption of the rule of law, we must be diligent in honoring our constitutional and legal responsibilities in addressing the problems facing our country today here at home.

Certainly, much has changed in the 20 years since I first joined the Department as the U.S. attorney in my home town of Pittsburgh. Complicated and sophisticated criminal conspiracies, worldwide drug trafficking, and international money laundering have become increasingly visible and threatening in recent years, imposing much greater demands upon the Department's investigative and prosecutive resources. We now require not only additional but more skilled personnel and more effective legal tools to combat such menaces. Congress has cooperated by providing additional resources and new entries in the prosecutor's legal arsenal, especially through legislation enacted in 1984, in 1986, and in 1988.

But much remains to be done. The President's violent crime initiative, introduced on May 15 of last year, lays out our enforcement strategy and resource needs in this area. Congress has responded by giving the U.S. attorneys 1,600 new prosecutorial and support positions. We must continue that effort in 1991. The organized crime strike forces have been reinvigorated by consolidation with the U.S. attorneys offices and by focusing on new forms of organized criminal activities to be pursued through a national organized crime strategy. We are also continuing our aggressive efforts to counter terrorist activities and to vigorously pursue extradition of terrorists apprehended abroad.

The President's 1989 crime package calls for stiffer sentences for firearms offenses and restoration of a fair and effective death penalty. These proposals, as well as important and necessary reforms in the exclusionary rule and habeas corpus, hold the clear promise of a much more effective response to the kinds of violent crime that too often prey upon our citizens.

I recently sent letters to the committee setting forth the administration's views on these and related issues, and I earnestly hope that we can reach the accommodations needed to achieve enactment of these proposals sooner rather than later in 1990.

Amidst the despair, waste, and degradation caused by drugs and violence, I do see rays of hope that our policies will finally prevail. I have said repeatedly that the war on drugs cannot be won by law enforcement alone but will require a change in our values. I am, therefore, heartened by recent surveys indicating that citizens are taking drug abuse and the violence and corruption that the drug culture engenders much more seriously than ever before.

The 1990 National Drug Control Strategy, released in January, set forth goals that are "ambitious but straightforward, to restore order and security to American neighborhoods, to dismantle drug trafficking organizations, to help people break the habit of drug use, and to prevent those who have never used drugs from starting."

In operational terms, this strategy requires a well-balanced criminal justice process, to be sure, but it also requires drug treatment programs, prevention activities in our schools, businesses, and communities, and international efforts aimed at countries that produce and process drugs, using the provisions of the 1988 Vienna United Nations Convention.

Recent international developments in domestic enforcement actions illustrate how this strategy has begun to take shape. Though the grim battle between the Colombian Government and the Medellin and Cali drug cartels continues, the valiant efforts by Colombian President Virgilio Barco against the Colombia drug barons, supported by a massive United States assistance program for the Andean nations, has had a major effect. The drug lords are visibly under siege. As President Barco has noted, nothing frightens Colombian drug traffickers more than facing American justice, and we intend to pursue these defendants relentlessly.

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