Both conservatives and liberals are denouncing President Trump’s pardon, which spared Joe Arpaio a jail sentence in his conviction of criminal contempt. On Friday, the White House released a statement saying Arpaio “continued his life’s work of protecting the public from the scourges of crime and illegal immigration.” Most people would disagree.
In fact, the truth of Arpaio’s term as sheriff is far less heroic. In recent years, he has become infamous for a decade-long case in which he was accused of racial profiling. A judge ordered Arpaio to stop targeting Latinos at traffic stops and detention. Arpaio insisted that he was going to continue “business as usual,” and he was soon found guilty of criminal contempt. Although he was scheduled to be sentenced on October 5th, many believed that Trump would pardon him at the campaign rally on Tuesday, which made national headlines because of the sheer number of protestors. Trump seemed to tease that he would pardon Arpaio in the near future, predicting that he would be “just fine.” He followed up by pardoning him yesterday.
Trump’s move drew criticism from both sides, with many speaking out against Arpaio’s actions. Senator McCain, a respected member of the Republican party, said that Arpaio had no remorse for his actions and that “no one is above the law.” Democrats across the country were shocked at Trump’s bold actions and his lack of respect for the law, using this as support for their argument to impeach Trump.
But one notable Arizonan refused to denounce Trump’s actions. Governor Doug Ducey said that Arpaio “deserves credit for helping to reduce crime in Maricopa County over his long career in law enforcement and public office.” He continued to stand by Arpaio, calling him a friend, and he said he wanted Arpaio to enjoy retirement with his family.
As the 2018 election comes closer and closer, think about who you want your governor to be. Ducey has made it clear that he stands by Trump and his actions, even when other Republicans are speaking out against them. Stay informed on the other candidates in the running, and when it comes time to vote, make your voice heard.