Former Sheriff Joe Arpaio, Arizona's most prominent proponent of racial profiling, told the conservative Washington Examiner this morning that he's planning to run for Senator Jeff Flake's seat in 2018.
He confirmed the news on Twitter, writing, "I am running for the U.S. Senate from the Great State of Arizona, for one unwavering reason: to support the agenda and policies of President Donald Trump in his mission to Make America Great Again."
As far as campaign rollouts go, this one doesn't seem to have involved much planning. Usually, if you're going to run for office, you hold a press conference and a kickoff rally. Arpaio wrote a tweet and talked to a couple of reporters on the phone.
He also has yet to register as a candidate with the FEC, which is mandatory once you've raised or spent more than $5,000.
Arpaio's website has a disclaimer that says "Paid for By Sheriff Joe Arpaio for U.S. Senate," but that committee doesn't appear in the FEC's database, either.
Also, the Washington Examiner? He couldn't get a spot on Fox News?
If we sound a little skeptical, that's because Arpaio has been threatening to run for higher office for years. But this time, it looks a little more plausible — he's set up a website and changed his profile pictures to an "Arpaio for U.S. Senate" graphic. Also, he's unemployed and has nothing better to do.
If you need a refresher on Arpaio's political career (which involved staging an assassination attempt against himself, arresting New Times' founders, and running a jail that he called a "concentration camp") you may want to check out this collection of our previous stories.
In the meantime, we've contacted Arpaio's handlers and requested an interview. Stay tuned.
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