The Law: The Remaking of S-1

The federal laws on crime, passed piecemeal by various Congresses, have never been systematically overhauled since the beginning of the Republic. Scattered through nearly every part of the 50-title U.S. code, they are sometimes laughable. For example, deflecting a Government carrier pigeon is a federal misdemeanor. They can also be unfair. Two men committing identical bank robberies can receive wildly differing sentences from different judges.

Congress created a commission to study recodification into one coherent volume as long ago as 1966. But after a bill was introduced by Senator John L. McClellan...

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