Former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio Announces Bid For Senate

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Joe Arpaio, the controversial Arizona ex-sheriff with hardline anti-immigration views who was pardoned a year ago by President Donald Trump, announced on Tuesday he is running for the US Senate.

Arpaio, the Maricopa County sheriff until 2016, was pardoned by President Trump last summer following for being convicted over his disregard for a federal court order.

The former sheriff's ambitions also sparked speculation that he could edge out a former state senator, Kelli Ward, in the GOP primary and could potentially create an opening for Republican Rep. Martha McSally, who colleagues have said is planning a Senate run but has not yet made an announcement. "I'm a big supporter of President Trump", Arpaio told the Washington Examiner in an interview kicking off his campaign. Jeff Flake's announcement that he would not seek re-election, a decision he says he made because of the current political environment and Trump.

Arpaio told the Washington Examiner, "I have a lot to offer".

Joe Arpaio was charged and convicted of contempt of court following civil rights abuses as sheriff - but those charges were dismissed after President Donald Trump pardoned him. "I'm going to have to work hard; you don't take anything for granted". "I think he would wipe her out", Berman said. Arpaio, who turns 86 this year, is older than any current USA senator and would be the oldest freshman senator ever elected.

Dubbed "America's toughest sheriff, ' he was best known for running a 'tent city" jail in Arizona's populous Maricopa County, and for targeting suspected illegal immigrants for arrest. Arpaio's criminal conviction came six months after he lost his seat to a Democratic challenger in 2016, and after Trump's pardon, he managed to emerge from the situation unscathed.

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Arpaio said that he would support some sort of legalization since Trump has signaled that he is willing to compromise with Democrats to give legal status to aliens in the discontinued Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. On Tuesday, the ACLU boasted that they "won every time" they sued Arpaio.

Arizona, while a fiercely Republican state, could be an uphill battle for Arpaio.

Arpaio says he understands the concerns of immigrants considering his own Italian background with two parents who came to the US legally for a better life.

"I am outspoken. I'm looking forward to it. Let them come".

As far as campaign rollouts go, this one doesn't seem to have involved much planning.

"As a sheriff, I've done some controversial investigations", said Arpaio, who worked as a DEA agent during the time he coined the idea of a border wall to stop "the drugs that destroy our country".

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