Meek Mill has made it clear that since being freed from jail that he would do what he felt was right to advocate for criminal justice reform. He was even willing to come to the White House to discuss his cause – but reportedly, a call from Jay-Z made him realize a meeting with President Trump wouldn’t be right. TMZ says that Jay-Z and “other high-profile African-Americans” contacted Meek and told him that “meeting with Trump would be problematic for his image and for the cause.” Beyond the troubling optic of alliance with Trump, which has tarnished Kanye West’s image, it’s questionable how much tangible progress could have come from their discussion.
Meek’s fight is based in the state of Pennsylvania, where the Trump administration doesn’t have much domain to change the state prison system. Current Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who doesn’t get along with Trump, is no advocate for criminal justice reform like Philadelphia DA Larry Krasner or Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf, who advocated for Meek’s release and a new trial. Sessions didn’t sign a recent prison reform bill that passed in Congress. Perhaps if Meek were able to meet with Congress he could influence federal reform initiatives, but all bets are off with this administration. Meek told TMZ the following:
“I was originally scheduled to be part of a panel on Prison Reform at the White House to help shed light on the issues within the system. Unfortunately, the focus turned to the President and Myself which concerned me that it might take away from creating a positive result from today’s discussions. As a result, I decided not to attend so that the focus would be solely on fixing our prison system. Most importantIy I remain fully committed to improving our criminal justice system.”