In a move that will anger many, President Trump issued a full and complete pardon to former Maricopa County, Arizona, Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
Watch for coming backlash.
The controversial 85-year-old former Maricopa County sheriff, who lost re-election in 2016 after 23 years in office, was found guilty of criminal contempt in July for defying a federal judge’s order to stop detaining people based on suspicion of their immigration status when there was no evidence that they had broken a state law.
Now he is a free man with a clean record.
“It seems as though conservatives say, ‘Rule of law for me, but not for you. Opportunity for us, but not for you. Amnesty for Arpaio, but not for the hard-working,'” Artemio Muniz, chair of the Texas Federation of Hispanic Republicans, told BuzzFeed News this week.
Arpaio’s conviction, as well as his election loss in 2016, marked a huge win for Latino and immigrant activists in Maricopa County who had campaigned to oust him for years.
But the sheriff had also worked to establish a close relationship with Trump after endorsing him in January 2016 — something the Republican candidate frequently referenced on the campaign trail. Arpaio appeared at Trump rallies and also spoke at the Republican National Convention.