Senator McCain critical of President Trump's pardon of Arpaio

PHOENIX — The Latest on President Donald Trump pardoning former Phoenix metro sheriff Joe Arpaio (all times local):

7:55 p.m.

U.S. Sen. John McCain of Arizona is voicing his displeasure at President Donald Trump's pardon of the former Phoenix metro area sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was convicted of a misdemeanor contempt-of-court charge for defying a judge's orders that he stop conducting immigration patrols.

Arpaio was facing the prospect of jail time at his sentencing in October.

McCain says in a statement that "no one is above the law" and "sworn law officers should always seek to be beyond reproach in their commitment to fairly enforcing the laws they swore to uphold."

By pardoning Arpaio, McCain says it undermines President Trump's claim for the respect of rule of law.

He also says Arpaio has shown no remorse for his actions.


7:40 p.m.

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey and Arizona congressman Andy Biggs are supporting the presidential pardon of former metro Phoenix sheriff Joe Arpaio.

Ducey says Arpaio "deserves credit for helping to reduce crime in Maricopa County over his long career in law enforcement and public office."

He says President Trump's pardon "has brought finality to this chapter in Arizona's history."

Ducey adds that Arpaio is his friend and now the 85-year-old ex-lawman can move on and enjoy his retirement with his wife and family.

Biggs says he applauds President Trump for pardoning Arpaio and adds that "America owes Sheriff Arpaio a debt of gratitude and not the injustice of a political witch hunt."


7:35 p.m.

Some top members of the American Civil Liberties Union are voicing their displeasure over the pardon of ex-Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio by President Donald Trump.

Cecillia Wang, an attorney who helped press the racial profiling case against Arpaio, says President Trump's pardon "is a presidential endorsement of racism."

She says President Trump "has acted in support of illegal, failed immigration enforcement practices that target people of color and have been struck down by the courts."

ACLU of Arizona Executive Director Alessandra Soler says "the racist practices that Arpaio implemented and President Trump foolishly admires are illegal and immoral and no pardon will ever change that reality."


7:20 p.m.

President Donald Trump has tweeted about his pardon of the former sheriff of the Phoenix metro area, who was convicted of a misdemeanor contempt-of-court charge for defying a judge's orders that he stop conducting immigration patrols.

Ex-sheriff Joe Arpaio was facing the prospect of jail time at his sentencing in October.

President Trump tweeted that he was "pleased to inform you that I have just granted a full Pardon to 85 year old American patriot Sheriff Joe Arpaio. He kept Arizona safe!"


7 p.m.

Maricopa County Supervisor Steve Gallardo calls the presidential pardon of former sheriff Joe Arpaio "a travesty" and says the board has to look at ways of recouping taxpayer money, likely through lawsuits.

Arpaio's criminal case sprang from the profiling lawsuit that ultimately discredited Arpaio's immigration patrols and is expected to cost taxpayers $92 million by next summer.

Gallardo, a longtime Arpaio critic, says county taxpayers continue to foot the bill for the former sheriff's illegal behavior.

He says Arpaio should not be allowed to walk away from his civil liability and he should reimburse county taxpayers.


6:55 p.m.

The Arizona Latino Legislative Caucus says President Donald Trump's pardon of former Phoenix metro sheriff Joe Arpaio "is yet another display of disrespect to the Latino community in Arizona."

In a statement, caucus members say Arapio abused his position of authority during his 24 years as Maricopa County's sheriff "to drive a personal agenda that promoted racism."

They add that "no amount of time will erase Arpaio's hateful harassment and the fear he instilled in our community, and no one should be above the law."


6:35 p.m.

Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton says the presidential pardon of the metro area's former sheriff "is a slap in the face to the people of Maricopa County."

He says it's especially a slap in the face of the Latino community and those ex-sheriff Joe Arpaio "victimized as he systematically and illegally violated their civil rights."

In a statement, Stanton says Arpaio received "a fair trial and a justifiable conviction" and there's nothing President Donald Trump can do "to change that awful legacy and the stain he has left on our community."

Stanton says it's not a proud day for Phoenix and "the city is moving on and moving forward from the divisiveness that defined the Arpaio era."


6:20 p.m.

The chair of the Democratic National Committee says President Donald Trump's decision to pardon former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is a "free pass."

DNC Chair Tom Perez says in a statement that "prejudice doesn't deserve a pardon" and that President Trump "just gave a free pass to his buddy Joe Arpaio, the nation's most notorious agent of racism and bigotry."

He said Friday that President Trump's decision to issue the pardon just as a dangerous hurricane is bearing down on Texas is "not presidential, that's a coward."

Perez was assistant U.S. attorney general for civil rights when he handled the Justice Department's 2012 lawsuit against Arpaio for racially profiling Latino residents in the Phoenix area.


6:25 p.m.

Former Sheriff Joe Arpaio tells The Associated Press that he appreciates President Donald Trump pardoning him after his recent federal conviction and says he'll always stand by the president.

Arpaio talked to the AP by phone while he was eating dinner at an Italian restaurant on Friday. He says he is thankful for the work his legal team did in securing the pardon. He plans to discuss his case more next week.

He said he learned of the pardon after the papers absolving the conviction were mailed to one of his lawyers.

He also said he's not ruling out a return to the political arena. Arpaio says he's going to be "very active."

Arpaio was convicted of a misdemeanor contempt-of-court charge for defying a judge's orders that he stop conducting immigration patrols. He was facing the prospect of jail time at his sentencing in October.


5 p.m.

President Donald Trump on Friday pardoned former sheriff Joe Arpaio, the retired Arizona lawman who was convicted for intentionally disobeying a judge's order in an immigration case.

The White House said the 85-year-old ex-sheriff of Arizona's Maricopa County was a "worthy candidate" for a presidential pardon.

The action came several days after President Trump, at a rally in downtown Phoenix, strongly hinted that he intended to issue a pardon.

Arpaio became linked to President Trump during the campaign for their hardline immigration views.

He was convicted of a misdemeanor for intentionally defying a judge's order to stop his traffic patrols that targeted immigrants.

Both politicians questioned the authenticity of then-President Barack Obama's birth certificate and have a similar history in sparring with judges.