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Former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio Running Again

If reelected, Arpaio says he will reopen the infamous Tent City in Phoenix — a jail he once joked was a "concentration camp."
Posted at 1:35 PM, Aug 26, 2019

Joe Arpaio, the man formerly known as "America's toughest sheriff," wants his job back. The 87-year-old said Sunday he's decided to seek a seventh term as Maricopa County sheriff with plans to enforce Arizona's drug trafficking, sex trafficking and immigration laws.

Arpaio was sheriff from 1993 to 2017. He lost a reelection bid in 2016, and then he was found guilty in 2017 of criminal contempt for ignoring a court order to stop what a judge ruled were racial profiling practices within his department. 

Arpaio's decision to run for sheriff again comes exactly two years after President Donald Trump pardoned him

Arpaio said, "The last four years have proven to be a time of lost opportunities to continue the kind of tough policing this county needs." 

If reelected, Arpaio also said he plans to reopen the infamous Tent City in Phoenix — a jail he once joked was a "concentration camp." Arpaio was criticized for forcing inmates to wear pink clothing items, work in chain gangs and stay outside in sweltering Arizona heat. Current Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone shut down the facility in October of 2017, calling it a "circus."

Arpaio unsuccessfully ran for U.S. Senate last year. He was defeated by Martha McSally in the state's Republican primary.

Additional reporting from Newsy affiliate CNN.