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Prop. 25: California retains cash bail, rejects punishment rollbacks

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Posted at 6:57 AM, Nov 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-05 09:57:57-05

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) -- Amid national angst over racial inequities in the criminal justice system, California voters rejected Proposition 25, an effort to roll back reforms targeting mass incarceration and reinstate tougher criminal penalties.

But rejecting Prop. 25 meant the overturning of a state law that would have ended what critics call a predatory cash bail system.

Analysts said Wednesday that the seeming incongruence does not undermine voters' recent shift away from get-tough practices.

Rather, the bail change fell victim to an unusual coalition of opponents, leaving supporters scratching their heads on how to proceed.

More than six in 10 voters backed reduced criminal penalties that they endorsed in previous ballot measures.