Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio stood by Donald Trump during an interview Tuesday, saying the billionaire candidate displays the courage of his convictions.
Fox News’ Stuart Varney questioned Arpaio, who has endorsed Trump, about the candidate’s comments concerning the federal judge of Mexican descent presiding over his Trump University case.
Varney noted that Trump issued a statement Tuesday indicating he would not be talking further about the litigation, which has made it into several days of news cycles, but offering several reasons why he believes the case should have already been dismissed. The presumptive GOP nominee also questioned the impartiality of the judge, who was appointed by President Obama.
“That’s a tough one. You know the Department of Justice and the ACLU have been suing me for years,” Arpaio said. “I’m currently in federal court so I don’t want to talk about my situation or even his. But let me tell you, he’s not slave to the teleprompter. He’s a type of guy that speaks out.”
“Sometimes his words are twisted,” the sheriff continued. “At least he has the guts to speak out and back up what he says. He may want to change here and there, but we need a guy that is brave.”
Varney questioned Arpaio whether he thought the controversy would fade now that Trump has issued his statement.
“You guys won’t let it go away,” Arpaio said. “Why don’t you drop it? The media keeps harping. They’ve got to find something about him, something and they keep picking on this comment. I’m not saying it’s right or wrong, but leave it alone. Let’s go on to other things.”
Arpaio suggested the media talk about the violent demonstrations against the presumptive GOP nominee and why nothing is being done about it.
As reported by Western Journalism, when the sheriff’s home town of Fountain Hills (outside of Phoenix) hosted a rally for Trump in March, three demonstrators who blocked one of two primary roads into the event were arrested.
Arpaio, who took to the stage about noon to introduce Trump, said, “We had a little problem. Some demonstrators were trying to disrupt.”
Boos erupted from the crowd of several thousand. The lawman then added, “Because of them, you had to get a little more sunshine, but we made it. And three of them are in jail,” which the audience cheered.
Arpaio proclaimed, “If they think they are going to intimidate you, and the next president of the United States, not going to happen. Not in this town!”
The Obama administration’s DOJ sued Arpaio in 2012, accusing him of racially profiling Latinos as possible illegal immigrants. A judge ruled last month in a civil case that Arpaio is in contempt of court for failing to comply with the court orders to cease racial profiling. The sheriff has denied being guilty of wrongdoing.
Arpaio is seeking his seventh term as Maricopa County Sheriff. He has served in the position since 1993.