The functioning of representative democracy crucially depends on political parties that mediate between citizens and the state. It is widely doubted, however, that contemporary parties can still perform this connective role. Taking seriously the ensuing challenges for representative democracy, Rethinking Party Reform advances a normative account of party reform, drawing on both democratic theory and political science scholarship on parties. Moving beyondpurely descriptive or causal-analytical perspectives on party reform, the book clarifies on theoretical grounds why party reform is centrally important for the sustainability of established democracies, and what effective party reforms could look like in an age where most citizens look to parties with scepticismand distrust. In doing so, this book underlines in distinctive fashion why scholars and citizens should care about re-inventing and transforming political parties, resisting widespread tendencies of either declaring parties unreformable or theorising them out of the picture.All modern sentencing systems, in the US and beyond, consider the offender's prior record to be an important determinant of the form and severity of punishment for subsequent offences. Repeat offenders receive harsher punishments than first offenders, and offenders with longer criminal records are punished more severely than those with shorter records. Yet the vast literature on sentencing policy, law, and practice has generally overlooked the issue of priorconvictions, even though this is the most important sentencing factor after the seriousness of the crime. In Paying for the Past, Richard S. Frase and Julian V. Roberts provide a critical and systematic examination of current prior record enhancements under sentencing guidelines across the US. Drawing on empirical data and analyses of guidelines from a number of jurisdictions, they illustrate different approaches to prior record enhancements and the differing outcomes of those approaches. Roberts and Frase demonstrate that most prior record enhancements generate a range of adverse outcomesat sentencing. Further, the pervasive justifications for prior record enhancement, such as the repeat offender's assumed higher risk of reoffending or greater culpability, are uncertain and have rarely been subjected to critical appraisal. The punitive sentencing premiums for repeat offenders prescribed byUS guidelines cannot be justified on grounds of prevention or retribution.Shining a light on a neglected but critically important topic, Paying for the Past examines the costs of prior record enhancements for repeat offenders and offers model guidelines to help reduce racial disparities and reallocate criminal justice resources for jurisdictions who use sentence enhancements.
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