Feathered Bastard

Joe Arpaio Makes Moolah off Melendres, Promises to "Never Back Down"

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See, Judge Snow barred Arpaio from enforcing federal criminal immigration laws, not state laws. Though, if Arpaio attempts to use state law as a cover for racial profiling Latino drivers, that would certainly run afoul of Snow's order.

Indeed, this is exactly why Arpaio's boys in beige got in trouble: they used Arizona statutes as a pretext during MCSO sweeps to stop Hispanic motorists and inquire about their immigration status.

The way Arpaio tells it, Judge Snow's decision in Melendres was the punishment he received for enforcing the "criminal laws" of Arizona.

"A federal judge recently ruled my office engaged in `racial profiling,'" he gripes. "The lawsuit was filed by open borders activists led by the ultra-liberal ACLU."

Arpaio blames U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement for giving the MCSO the wrong training as part of the 287(g) program.

That's essentially an admission of guilt. If you rob a bank because someone told you to rob a bank, you still robbed a bank.

Arpaio fails to mention that in 2009 ICE jerked his 287(g) street agreement, which gave some of his officers immigration enforcement powers.

At the time, Arpaio declared that he would still enforce federal immigration law, even without 287(g). He cited a non-existent federal statute that one of his flunkies found on a nativist website. Then he hired anti-immigration attorney Kris Kobach to train all his deputies in immigration enforcement.

But in this recent fundraising letter, likely written by Arpaio's campaign guru Chad Willems, Arpaio's defiance is hedged by his need to placate the court.

In one paragraph, he mentions that he's appealing Snow's decision, saying, "It's a decision I don't agree with, but the judge has ruled, and I will abide by the decision until it is reversed by a higher court."

In another paragraph, in relation to a separate civil rights suit brought against him by the DOJ, he derides the idea of there being a monitor to ensure he abides by the decision of the judge.

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Stephen is a former staff writer and columnist at Phoenix New Times.
Contact: Stephen Lemons