On Tuesday, the former Maricopa County sheriff, Joe Arpaio, revealed he will run for a Senate seat. This announcement made him the fourth Republican congressional candidate who has been convicted of a crime.
BREAKING: Joe Arpaio tells @NBCNews: "After talking with my wife, I've decided to announce my candidacy for the Republican nomination of the United States Senate seat, which is vacated by Senator Jeff Flake in Arizona."
— Peter Alexander (@PeterAlexander) January 9, 2018
In July of 2017, Arpaio was convicted of misdemeanor criminal contempt for refusing to obey a court order that forced him to stop illegally detaining people he thought were undocumented immigrants. One month later, Trump pardoned him. Now he is running to fill Senator Jeff Flake’s seat in Arizona.
The other three who are convicted criminals are Don Blankenship, Michael Grimm, and Greg Gianforte.
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Blankenship is running for Democratic Senator Joe Manchin’s seat. He was convicted and served a year in prison on a misdemeanor charge of conspiring to violate mine safety laws after 29 miners died at Upper Big Branch Mine in 2010.
Grimm, who was a former FBI agent, is challenging to retake Rep. Dan Donovan’s seat in New York, which he once held. In 2014, he had pleaded guilty to felony tax evasion.
Gianforte is running for reelection for his seat in Montana. He is notorious for body-slamming a reporter before he won the 2017 special election. He has pleaded guilty and was charged with assaulting a reporter.
Arpaio, Blankenship, and Grimm have tried to spin their convictions as being an attack on them because of their political beliefs. This is not an uncommon thing for politicians to do.
The national Republican Party has already announced they will support Donovan for the seat in New York and Gianforte for the Montana seat.
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