Zimring, an expert on criminal justice and family law, appeared on NPR on Tuesday, October 26, 2004, with host Renee Montagne to discuss the possible turnaround in voter sentiment. A decade after California voters overwhelmingly approved the three strikes law, polls show that nearly two-thirds of likely voters favor Proposition 66, which would amend the law to prohibit extended prison sentences for nonviolent crimes.
"It isn't that all of a sudden criminals are popular people," says Zimring. "This is still a get-tough state, but what's happened is the combination of other things to worry us and the declining crime rates [have] lowered the temperature of the crime issue."
Zimring is the author of Punishment and Democracy: Three Strikes and You're Out In California(with Hawkins and Kamin, 2001) and Crime and Punishment In California: The Impact Of Three Strikes And You're Out (with Kamin and Hawkins, 1999).