Pretty Much No One Thinks Trump Pardoning His Good Buddy Joe Arpaio Was A Great Idea
Last night, being that it was a Friday night and people were somewhat concerned about a massive hurricane headed for Texas, Donald Trump decided it would be a real good time to announce the fact that he was gonna give his buddy Joe Arpaio a nice big pardon. Why? Because what is the point, even, of being the president if you can't give your friends a break once in a while? What! So he tortured some folks, like that is anything to send someone to jail for six months over!
Weirdly, a lot of people seem to think this was a poor idea. Especially people in Arizona.
Like the Arizona Republic's editorial board, which did not pull any punches in calling the move a slap in the face to Latinos and a win for institutional racism:
Donald Trump’s pardon elevates Arpaio once again to the pantheon of those who see institutional racism as something that made America great.
Many will characterize it as a slap to the Latino community – and it is.
The vast majority of Latinos in Arizona are not undocumented, yet they all fell under heightened scrutiny as Arpaio honed his image.
The pardon was a slap to those who worked through the judicial system to make Arpaio accountable, too. It robbed the people hurt by his policies of justice – even before a judge could mete out a sentence.
The pardon was a sign of pure contempt for every American who believes in justice, human dignity and the rule of law.
"By pardoning Arpaio, Trump made it clear that institutional racism is not just OK with him. It is a goal."
Senator John McCain also found it disappointing that Trump has decided that his friends are above the law:
“No one is above the law and the individuals entrusted with the privilege of being sworn law officers should always seek to be beyond reproach in their commitment to fairly enforcing the laws they swore to uphold. Mr. Arpaio was found guilty of criminal contempt for continuing to illegally profile Latinos living in Arizona based on their perceived immigration status in violation of a judge’s orders. The President has the authority to make this pardon, but doing so at this time undermines his claim for the respect of rule of law as Mr. Arpaio has shown no remorse for his actions.”
Greg Stanton, the mayor of Phoenix? He is also pretty pissed!
You know who else does not think this was a great idea, strangely enough? Former ethics director Walter Shaub, who resigned in July following the realization that Trump was just not that into ethics. He pointed out that pardons are actually only supposed to be given when the person getting one admits that they were wrong.
Also, last night on Real Time with Bill Maher, former Clinton aide and CNN Commentator Paul Begala pointed out that this could signal something even darker -- it could be a way of letting his associates know that as long as they don't roll over on them during the Mueller investigation, they will get pardons themselves.
“And yes he wants to flaunt the rule of law and he’s an autocrat wannabe. I think there’s another game here he’s playing. He wants to send a signal to the targets of the Mueller investigation that ‘if you hold tight and don’t roll on me, I’ll pardon you.’ Because Mueller is going after Trump associates first.”
Which I think we all kind of figured anyway.
Oddly enough, even over on the AskTrumpSupporters subreddit, most of the responders also agreed that this was in no way a good idea.
Hell no, I hate Joe Arpaio, he's committed contempt of court, Abuse of power, Refused to investigate sex crimes and had massive scandals during his tenure. I hate to say this, but I'm disappointed in President Trump for pardoning him.
Weird! But before you start thinking "Woah! Maybe this is actually something so gross that NO ONE can defend it" -- allow me to rain on your parade by assuring you that the Breitbart comment section and the The_Donald subreddit were totally, totally into it.
This man is hero, he didn't think prison should be paradise like the liberals do so he would do stuff like march prisoners from one jail to another in their underwear, he ran a mugshot of the day contest which I miss dearly. The New York Times tried to smear him so he won a $3.75M settlement. He started the truther movement to top it all off. All in all, great guy the media hates because he's one or the few people actually being tough on crime. He once said he wanted to make prison so bad that they wouldn't want to come back and it WORKS crime in his county went down as a result.
Oh sure, he's so totally good at fighting crime that he refused to bother with solving sex abuse cases or bolstering his sex crimes unit because he was way too busy tracking down President Obama's birth certificate.
We share a country with these people. That's nice!
Joe Arpaio is gross and deserves to rot in his own jail for eternity! Also please leave some money in our tip jar! Click click click below!
Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Previously, she was a Senior Staff Writer at Death & Taxes, and Assistant Editor at The Frisky (RIP). Currently, she writes for Wonkette, Friendly Atheist, Quartz and other sites. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse