Trump signs sweeping criminal justice bill

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WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 21: U.S. President Donald Trump signs the First Step Act and the Juvenile Justice Reform Act in the Oval Office of the White House December 21, 2018 in Washington, DC. The Trump administration is battling on multiple fronts with major developments on U.S. foreign policy in Syria, the resignation of Defense Secretary James Mattis, a falling stock market, and a potential governmental shutdown at midnight. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON (AP) — With a government shutdown just hours away, President Donald Trump on Friday signed rare bipartisan legislation addressing concerns with the criminal justice system.

Trump called the bill “an incredible success for our country” and “beyond bipartisan” during an Oval Office signing ceremony.

Lawmakers and advocates also hailed it as a hugely influential package and thanked the president for supporting the issue.

The legislation will give judges more discretion when sentencing some drug offenders and will boost prisoner rehabilitation efforts, among other efforts.

It received the rare support of both Democratic and Republican lawmakers as well as conservative and liberal groups that rarely work together.

Playing a key role behind the scenes was Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner, whose father spent time in federal prison when he was younger.

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