What happens to people after Donald Trump pardons them? One of POTUS’ big-splash pardons left opinion columnists speculating that the president pardoned a wayward sheriff to send a get-out-of-jail message to Trump’s people headed that direction. This is what happened next.
The president’s unusual pardon was in the midst of the Special Counsel’s Robert Mueller’s III probe. Mueller’s staff investigated Russia attacking the 2016 presidential elections and the presidents’ obstruction of justice. The commander-in-chief pardoned Sheriff Joe Arpaio (R-AZ), 87, for criminal contempt of court and commuted his six-month prison sentence.
When the former sheriff announced he wanted his old job back this week, former Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) tweeted a copy of the $100 check he donated to Arpaio’s competitor. The sheriff is running for a seventh term as Maricopa County sheriff. One of his campaign promises was to bring back that Tent City Jail. Flake tweeted:
The senator signed the check and probably meant to add a notation of “Country over Party.” Or not, it turned out “County over Party.”
Arpaio lined right up behind Trump’s attitude toward immigration. He was notorious for housing people in a Tent City Jail in the hot southwestern state summers. He also made them wear pink underwear. The politician also campaigned for Trump in 2016.
The sheriff originally completely ignored a federal judge’s order to cease and desist detaining those he thought might be in the country illegally and turning them over to the U.S. Border Patrol agents.
The sheriff’s attorneys claimed that the judge’s order was “not clear.” They also argued that their client was simply doing what others did by turning the refugees into the Border Patrol.
Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona Alessandra Soler released a statement that read, according to The Washington Post article that Senator Flake referenced his tweet:
‘President Trump might’ve pardoned him, but those who had families and communities destroyed by his unlawful tactics have not. Joe Arpaio is a racist — and he should never hold public office again.’
Arpaio said “Watch out world:”
‘“On this day, August 25, 2019, after consultation and approval from my wife of 61 years, Ava, I have decided to run to be reelected Sheriff. Watch out world! We are back!’
The octogenarian pointed out on his announcement it was his wife’s birthday and the two-year anniversary of Trump’s pardon. The president pardoned the former sheriff for what was in his opinion:
‘…a scurrilous misdemeanor contempt charge filed by President Obama’s administration.’
The White House released a statement when Trump pardoned the former sheriff. In it, POTUS did not even mention what crime he was pardoning. Instead, he spoke about Arpaio’s military service and his attack on the “scourges of crime and illegal immigration:”
‘Arpaio’s life and career, which began at the age of 18 when he enlisted in the military after the outbreak of the Korean War, exemplify selfless public service. “Throughout his time as sheriff, Arpaio continued his life’s work of protecting the public from the scourges of crime and illegal immigration.’
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Featured images via Twitter.
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