As most of you have no-doubt heard, there's strong speculation that Sheriff Joe Arpaio will announce his run for Arizona Governor on Monday. Personally, I hope he does run. He'll have to resign to do so, and the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors will get to appoint a replacement.
That means we'll get a new sheriff almost immediately, and Arpaio's sweeps of the Hispanic community will end. Also, whatever incriminating documents that haven't been shredded over at MCSO headquarters may be opened up to the feds by Joe's successor.
And the feds, I hear, are looking to indict Joe and his henchmen, such as Chief Deputy David Hendershott through a federal grand jury now probing Arpaio's regime for corruption and abuse of power. The opening up of his files, or what's left of them, and unfettered access to the MCSO in general would be a boon to, say, the FBI.
So, um, run, Joe, run!
Some of Joe's neo-Nazi supporters showed up today to back Republican Bill Montgomery, Joe's pick for Maricopa County Attorney. Among the swastika-lickers present in full National Socialist Movement combat gear was none other than the Ernst Rohm of the East Valley, J.T. Ready.
The Republic reported that Ready said he and his fellow SS-wannabees were present to "support Sheriff Joe's candidate for County Attorney.
Montgomery turned his nose up at this show of Nazi love. But where Joe Arpaio and neo-Nazis are involved, they practically need to use prophylactics. Ready, who formerly was great pals with Arizona's number one bigot Russell Pearce, has been supportive of the sheriff in the past, and was present at a counter-demonstration to a huge pro-immigration march opposing the sheriff last year.
As you may recall, Arpaio gave a photo op to another neo-Nazi at that counterdemonstration, one for which Arpaio never apologized. I did a cover story on Arpaio's ties to extremist groups, and his support among neo-Nazis and other wackos in my New Times cover story from last year, "Ja, Joe!"
Thing is, in any other state, support from neo-Nazis would be the kiss of death. But here in Sand Land, where plenty of crazy crackers think likewise, the connection is practically shrugged off. Hell, maybe Joe should make J.T. a member of his campaign staff, if Arpaio ultimately decides to run.
In other news, Phoenix Public Safety Manager (read, "Police Chief") Jack Harris came out against Arizona's racial profiling law today, outlining why the law would hurt law enforcement efforts in the city.
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"I think this legislation is not good for law enforcement," Harris said. "I don't think this is good for our community, and I'm very concerned about the civil rights of our residents who live here in our community.
"And I'm really concerned about the victims and witnesses of crime that are going to be afraid to call their local police department and report that they've been assaulted, robbed or raped, because they're afraid if they call, we're going to jump to questions about their immigration status."
Harris joins a diverse range of individuals such as Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Tutu and Republican Texas Governor Rick Perry in voicing opposition to the law. Harris said, however, that the Phoenix Police would have no choice but to enforce the law once it is enacted in about 90 days or so.