A day after former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio announced his plans to run for the seat that will be vacated by Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Arpaio compared himself with the President and his political style.
“Isn’t it great to be compared to the President of the United States?” Arpaio said in an interview with The Associated Press on Wednesday.
Arpaio reportedly said the two share a focus on immigration, an ability to recover from incidents that would normally sink the careers of other politicians and the ability to amass consistent media coverage. He also noted he and President Trump have both been persecuted by the U.S. Department Justice, according to the Associated Press.
Trump pardoned Arpaio this fall of a criminal contempt of court charge for intentionally targeting immigrants in his department’s traffic stops. Trump consistently attacks the Justice Department for its investigation in whether his campaign colluded with Russia to win the 2016 election.
Arpaio said Trump’s agenda fueled his desire to run for the Senate said, but said “people are not going to vote for me just (for) being pro-Trump.”
Before Arpaio announced his bid, Trump showed some support for Arpaio’s opponent, former state Sen. Kelli Ward (R), but he has not formerly endorsed her. Rep. Martha McSally (R-AZ) is also expected to announce a run for the seat in coming days.