Contenders have started lining up for Jeff Flake’s Senate seat, one of whom is an ally to President Donald Trump.
Joe Arpaio, the former sheriff of Maricopa County in Arizona, announced Tuesday that he plans to run for Senate, hoping to fill the spot left vacant by Flake, who plans to retire at the end of his term.
Arpaio is a close ally of Trump, who pardoned the sheriff last summer, “sparing the former sheriff jail time after he was convicted of ignoring a federal court order in a racial-profiling case,” according to The Washington Examiner.
Flake said he was leaving the Senate because he couldn’t handle modern politics spearheaded by Trump. Flake and Trump have had a contentious relationship. Both have spent time speaking out against each other.
All of this was not lost on Twitter users.
According to NBC News reporter Vaughn Hillyard, Arpaio and Flake haven’t spoken to each other for a while.
“I haven’t talked to him for a long time,” Arpaio said. “I know he and Senator McCain went public denouncing the president’s pardon. So I don’t know which side of the fence they’re on. I don’t have to talk to them.”
Arpaio will join other contenders for Flake’s seat, including Kelli Ward and state Rep. Martha McSally, who also announced Tuesday she will run for the position, according to Roll Call, a political news website.
Arpaio told the Examiner that he’s confident in his chance to win.27 comments on this story
“I have a lot to offer. I’m a big supporter of President Trump,” Arpaio said. “I’m going to have to work hard; you don’t take anything for granted. But I would not being doing this if I thought that I could not win. I’m not here to get my name in the paper, I get that everyday, anyway.”
Arpaio said his brazen nature will suit him well in the 2018 election.
“I am outspoken. I’m looking forward to it. Let them come. They’ll have their political firing squads and bring tons of money here, because they don’t want to lose,” he said. “I just want to do everything I can to support our president.”