Thursday, December 15, 2011

Rick Perry Endorser Sheriff Joe Arpaio Accused of Civil Rights Violations

Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Linked to source: LA Times

Just two weeks ago the Rick Perry campaign sent out a newsletter with a strong endorsement from Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio. At the time I questioned why of all people they would choose a sheriff's endorsement to circulate. Couldn't they get anyone better? The endorsement was all about how Perry, like Arpaio would be tough on illegal immigration.
Well, now they just might regret their pick of endorsements! Sheriff Arpaio is in the news today for a wide range of civil rights violations against Latinos, including a pattern of racial profiling and discrimination and carrying out heavy-handed immigration patrols based on racially charged citizen complaints. Not only that, but a federal grand jury is also investigating Arpaio's office on criminal abuse-of-power allegations and is examining the investigative work of the sheriff's anti-public corruption squad.
Doesn't sound like the kind of guy you want on your team now, does it? 
It will be interesting to see if this comes up in the debates tonight!
Meanwhile, let's take a quick look at other endorsements around the block-
Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz backs "underdog" Rick Santorum (an endorsement that only holds weight in Iowa)
Newt Gingrich snagged the coveted Union Leader endorsement (but I've explained why that's a kiss of death here)
Ron Paul, ever the master of social media, actually has a whole page on his website devoted to endorsements. Fans can create their own video, upload it to YouTube, and see it show up on the official Ron Paul site. Yet again showing their knowledge and domination of SEO, if you google "endorsements" one of the first suggestions (after endorsing a check) is "endorsements for Ron Paul." Bravo, campaigners, your ability to work the internet never ceases to impress me. That being said, I can't find where anyone of any political clout has endorsed Paul, other than the Daily Iowan newspaper. (And we all know how important that paper is!) 
If you want to see a list of major national or small state endorsements, check out P2012. It is very interesting to see how many are behind Romney (45 House members, 7 Senators, 3 Governors) and how many are behind Gingrich (1 Governor from his home state, 8 Congressmen - 5 of which are from his home state)!

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