The Congress: The Politics of Crime

In October of every even-numbered year, members of Congress take stock. They look ahead toward the November elections—and glance back at what they have done, or failed to do. This year, they know that voters are aroused about crime and violence and they are well aware that President Nixon, as well as Vice President Agnew, have accused the Congress of failing to act on the Administration's law-enforcement bills. As a result, the Congress is working with last-minute desperation to escape any soft-on-crime label.

The Administration has proposed three major anticrime measures. Already enacted is the Washington, D.C., law-enforcement bill, which...