Booker hits 'horrible' 90s-era crime bills backed by Biden, Sanders

Sen. Cory BookerCory Anthony BookerSpeculation swirls around whether Bloomberg will make Las Vegas debate stage Conway: Trump is 'toying with everybody' by attacking Bloomberg for stop-and-frisk comments Democratic rivals sharpen attacks as Bloomberg rises MORE (D-N.J.) on Wednesday slammed crime bills signed in the 1990s, touting his own plans for criminal justice reform. 

"I passed a comprehensive criminal justice reform bill with other senators on both sides of the aisle, the first time since those horrible crime bills back in the 1990s,” Booker, a 2020 presidential candidate, said Wednesday during a CNN town hall. 

Booker appeared to reference the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, which was authored by former vice president and possible 2020 Democratic candidate Joe BidenJoe BidenDemocrats redefine center as theirs collapses Speculation swirls around whether Bloomberg will make Las Vegas debate stage Pelosi: 'I'm not counting Joe Biden out' MORE. The legislation was also backed by fellow 2020 contender Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersDemocrats redefine center as theirs collapses Speculation swirls around whether Bloomberg will make Las Vegas debate stage Pelosi: 'I'm not counting Joe Biden out' MORE (I-Vt.), according to CNN.

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The bill set strict sentencing standards which, critics have argued, led to an era of mass incarceration.

Biden, who is reportedly close to making a decision on a possible White House bid, has said "I haven't always been right" on the issue of criminal justice.

Booker also said Wednesday that he would "absolutely" support mass pardons for federal marijuana offenses.

“The war on drugs has been a war on people,” he said. “As president of the United States, your job is to pursue justice.”