Even before Trump’s groper tape aired last week, the conservative Arizona Republic had endorsed Hillary Clinton, the first time in the paper’s 126-year history that it backed a Democrat for president. That betrayal of the alt-right base drew death threats and led to many canceled subscriptions.
Undaunted, this week the paper’s editorial board endorsed former Phoenix cop Paul Penzone in the race for Maricopa County Sheriff, a position that’s been held for 23 years by self-proclaimed “America’s toughest sheriff,” Joe Arpaio. Endorsing Penzone wasn’t exactly a profile in courage, given Arpaio’s legal problems and cratering popularity, but it sure is welcome news!
Maricopa County is home to about 4 million people. Sheriff Joe Arpaio does a good job of serving one of them: himself.
Voters should reject the Showboat Sheriff’s bid for a seventh term and elect Paul Penzone.
The Republic’s editorial covers the slimy territory that has characterized the sheriff’s reign, beginning with his convictions for racial profiling and civil contempt of court, followed by this week’s announcement that the feds will try him for criminal conduct.
That’s on top of tens of millions of dollars in lawsuits Arpaio has cost taxpayers; a culture of corruption that’s led to the dismissal or conviction of many of his lieutenants; the sheriff’s assaults on judges, journalists, and other political enemies; his racist birther stunt (which continues, Trump’s reversal notwithstanding), and his “singular focus” on immigration, which caused the sheriff’s office to ignore serious crimes.
Needless to say, Arpaio doesn’t have a record to run on, so his TV spots are little more than gutter-swilling attacks on Paul Penzone. At their core is a 13-year-old domestic assault charge against the former policeman—an ad so dishonest Penzone filed a lawsuit to stop it.
Joe Arpaio, who is sticking by the predator Trump, remains a hero with the racist, nativist, homophobic, alt-right base nationwide; in fact, most of his $12 million war chest comes from Breitbart goobers beyond Arizona’s borders. If you can, throw some out-of-state love Penzone’s way. A new poll, just out today, shows him leading Arpaio by 10 points!
Click here to help Paul Penzone’s campaign for Maricopa County Sheriff!