Joe Arpaio is about to get the best news of his life.
On Friday, it was discovered that the White house counsel, at the request of President Donald Trump, has prepared a presidential pardon for the Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
And Trump is ready to sign it.
The question is whether President Trump will sign the pardon now, before traveling to Phoenix for a rally at the Phoenix Convention Center on Tuesday, August 22 – or if President Trump will sign it at all.
On Monday, Aug. 14, Trump retweeted a Fox and Friends article headlined, “Trump ‘seriously considering’ a pardon for Sheriff Joe Arpaio” – a signal to Trump’s base that he did not intend to travel to Arizona for Tuesday’s rally without having first pardoned Arpaio – or even that Trump might use the Tuesday rally as the stage on which to sign the pardon with Arpaio present, on stage.
Not pardoning Arpaio prior to or during the Phoenix rally could set off a negative reaction among Trump’s base that remembers Sheriff Arpaio as an early and vocal Trump supporter who championed Trump’s rally call during the campaign to “Build That Wall!”
Either way, Trump’s decision will be controversial, especially given Arpaio’s history of enforcing immigration laws the Obama administration wanted ignored, and the divisiveness of the Charlottesville protests with the mainstream media attempting to portray Trump as a white supremacist.
On July 31, U.S. District Judge Susan R. Bolton found Arpaio guilty of misdemeanor criminal contempt in an opinion she could have written her opinion before the trial even started – an opinion that made clear her prejudice from the start that Arpaio was guilty of misdemeanor civil contempt guilty conviction.
Now at 85-years-old, Arpaio faces a misdemeanor criminal contempt sentence that could include up to six-months in jail.
For Arpaio supporters, this would be a sad end to a distinguished career that includes Arpaio’s service in the U.S. Army from 1950-1953, his service as a police officer in Washington, D.C., and Las Vegas, Nevada, as well as the years he spent working as a top federal drug enforcement officer in foreign countries and the United States.
Arpaio, a former DEA narcotics agent and head of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Department of Justice, for Arizona.
Arpaio’s sentencing hearing is scheduled on October 5 – a hearing that will not be held if President Trump pardons him prior to that date.
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