Joe Arpaio, the former Arizona sheriff notorious for his draconian views on immigration, is running for the Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Jeff Flake.
Arpaio, 85, told the Washington Examiner in an interview published Tuesday.
“I have a lot to offer. I’m a big supporter of President Trump. I’m going to have to work hard; you don’t take anything for granted. But I would not [be] doing this if I thought that I could not win. I’m not here to get my name in the paper, I get that everyday, anyway.”
Arpaio, who presided over Maricopa County for 24 years until 2016, refers to himself as “America’s toughest sheriff.” practiced discriminatory policing tactics and eventually got into trouble when he disregarded a 2011 Department of Justice order that forbade him from detaining people illegally based on their immigration status.
When Arpaio refused to stop the practice of illegally racial profiling he was found in criminal contempt of court for which Donald Trump eventually pardoned him for in August.
The former sheriff is also known for calling his state’s own jail a “concentration camp,” allowing jailers to break the neck of a paraplegic man, failing to investigate hundreds of sex abuse cases and botching a SWAT raid in which deputies laughed as a puppy burned to death.
Arpaio is also an avid birther in regards to President Obama.
None of this factored into Trump's decision to pardon Arpaio except perhaps to put Arpaio in a positive light.
Arpaio’s candidacy puts him up against Kelli Ward, a former state senator who challenged McCain in the 2016 Republican primary, and U.S. Rep. Martha McSally (R).