PHOENIX – Joe ArpaioThe 90-year-old former Arizona sheriff, who was once a powerful figure in Republican politics but was ousted nearly six years ago because of frustrations with him headline-grabbing tactics and legal troubles, was defeated Wednesday in the race for mayor of an affluent suburb where he lived for more than two decades.
The political stakes of running in the Republican town of Fountain Hills, population 24,000, were much lower for Arpaio than when he served as the chief law enforcement officer of the county with a population of more than 4 million people.
Arpaio was defeated by a Democratic challenger in 2016 and was held in contempt the following year for defying a judge’s order to end highway patrols targeting immigrants, even though he was later pardoned by then-President Donald Trump.
Arpaio then finished third in the 2018 Republican primary for the U.S. Senate seat and second in the GOP primary in a bid to regain the sheriff’s office in 2020.
Before the federal government and the courts stripped him of his immigration powers, Arpaio led 20 large-scale highway patrols targeting immigrants and more than 80 business raids to catch people working in the United States without authorization.
For now him demonstrative streak has worked well for voters over the years, Arpaio faced severe criticism for adopting such a policy he were known to be controversial and resulted in $147 million in taxpayer-funded court bills.
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