By Talbert Toole
Gov. Phil Bryant attended an event at the White House Thursday where he sat front row listening to President Donald Trump and reality TV star Kim Kardashian addressed a criminal justice initiative to reconnect those convicted back to jobs after being released from prison.
Kardashian said she was happy to announce a new initiative, a “ride-share partnership,” where formerly incarcerated people will be given gift cards to pay for rides to and from job interviews, jobs and to family members.
The partnership is with the company Lyft—a transportation network company.
“I just want to thank the President for really standing behind this issue,” Kardashian said. “And see the compassion that he’s had for criminal justice has been really remarkable.”
Bryant applauded Kardashian and her efforts on Twitter Thursday. He thanked her “for being a champion for criminal justice reform.”
Mississippi recently passed its own criminal justice reform—HB 1352—known as the Criminal Justice Reform Act. Known as a modest reform bill, it does intend to create more intervention courts for drug offenders, along with waiving minimal court fines and fees. In addition, its intent is to also allow some nonviolent convictions to be expunged from records.
This is not Kardashian’s first time visiting the White House and the President in regards to criminal justice reform. She visited with Trump in May 2018 advocating for the release of Alice Marie Johnson who was serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole due to a conviction of a nonviolent drug charge. However, Trump commuted the sentence.