The average age of the three Republicans who voted for the bill — Sens. Mike Lee, Rand Paul, and Ted Cruz — was 45.3 years old. The average age of the five Republicans who voted against the bill: 69.4 years old.
These days in Washington, there is a bipartisan coalition of lawmakers ready to change the U.S. criminal justice system, from changing drug laws and eliminating mandatory minimum sentencing to changing practices inside prisons like solitary confinement.
But standing in the way is a generation of older lawmakers who came of age politically during the 1980s and early 1990s when being tough-on-crime was a prerequisite for office.