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Speaking today in the town of Buckeye, Arizona, which he called "Hawkeye," Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio didn't disappoint the wingers who were waiting on pins and needles.

Joe Arpaio on Thursday announced he'll run for a sixth term as Maricopa County sheriff.... He'll likely face Mike Stauffer, a 20-year veteran of the Scottsdale Police Department who announced in October he'd run against Arpaio as an independent. Stauffer switched his affiliation from Republican for the race because, he said, the election for the position should be nonpartisan. Arizona Republic

Oh, goodie.  

Arpaio will be 80 years old by the time the election rolls around, but that's not the worst of it. By far. We've suffered through 20 years of Joe Arpaio in Maricopa County, but let's just look at this past year alone:

• The Department of Justice, after a three-year investigation, release a report that said Arpaio runs the most discriminatory and corrupt Sheriff's Office in U.S. history. Arpaio recently responded in a letter to the Feds that he will "cooperate" with the DOJ to turn his agency around, but in the same sentence he said "cooperation is a two-way street." We know what that means: I'll cooperate on my terms, kinda like Boehner's version of compromise.

• Arpaio botched more than 400 sex crimes, some committed on children as young as two. In El Mirage, a Phoenix suburb within his jurisdiction, he was told about the molestations three years ago, but failed to investigate or prosecute even one. To no one's surprise, many were children of immigrants.

• An investigation into the Munnell Memo, a scathing indictment of Arpaio's Office by former Deputy Frank Munnell, led to the firing of Arpaio's Chief Deputy and two other key aides. The memo alleged a shit load of corruption, cronyism, racism, embezzlement, and other unethical and dickish behavior.

• Unlike every other county in Arizona, which saw crime rates decline, Arpaio's Maricopa County saw an increase in crime, which has been the case for several years. Good job there, Joe. He has more important things to do, like assemble a posse to investigate President Obama's birth certificate, or raid cock fights in a tank with Steven Seagal.

• Arpaio continued his reputation for beating and even killing inmates in his custody. Just last month Marty Atencio was Tasered to death. The Gulf War veteran's family will likely file a lawsuit, as they should, joining more than 6,300 other cases against the Sheriff's Office. The $50 million that Arpaio has cost county taxpayers in lawsuits, by far the most in the nation, will increase significantly. A list of other lawsuits in 2011 would fill another diary.

• Arpaio's former County Attorney, Andrew Thomas, went to trial after the Bar Association filed more than 30 ethics charges against him and two associates for the vindictive lawsuits that Arpaio and Thomas leveled against their political enemies. If Arpaio did not perjure himself during his testimony, it's a miracle.

• Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano stripped Arpaio of his right to interrogate or otherwise investigate immigrants in his jails, and the DOJ effectively put an end to his ineffective "sweeps," where Arpaio's deputies goose-step through a neighborhood rounding up "suspicious" people (that is, brown people).  

• Oh, he supported Russell Pearce during the Senator's recall (how'd that work out?) and he endorsed Rick Perry for the GOP nomination. Perry joins a very long list of other losing candidates endorsed by the Sheriff.

And those are just the highlow-lights. I haven't even touched on his Spanish pink underwear scheme. True. With more than $6 million in Arpaio's war chest, we're sure to see more classy political ads like the one his goons ran against the Sheriff's last opponent, Dan Saban.


Happily, the same group that led the recall against Senator Pearce, Citizens for a Better Arizona, is gearing up for the Arpaio-Stauffer race. Let's do this thing!

Originally posted to Maggie's Farm on Thu Jan 05, 2012 at 03:16 PM PST.

Also republished by Baja Arizona Kossacks, LatinoKos, and Daily Kos.

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