John McCain lashed out at President Trump’s pardoning Joe Arpaio, the former Arizona sheriff who was found guilty of criminal contempt after illegally targeting Latinos.
The 80-year-old Republican Senator accused the president of undermining the rule of law in his statement.
‘@POTUS’s pardon of Joe Arpaio, who illegally profiled Latinos, undermines his claim for the respect of rule of law,’ McCain posted to Twitter.
On Friday night Trump tweeted his decision to pardon Arpaio, citing his long history of public service.
Republican Senator John McCain joined dozens of others to slam Trump’s decision to pardon Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio (McCain is pictured in July)
In a statement posted on Twitter, McCain accused the President of undermining the rule of law in his decision
Roger Stone, a close personal friend of the president and former adviser to his presidential campaign had a harsh response to McCain’s statement
Roger Stone, a close personal friend of the president and former adviser to his presidential campaign had a harsh response to McCain’s statement.
On Saturday Stone tweeted: ‘Karma about to get you @SenJohnMcCain and you will burn in hell for all eternity.’
Stone is known for his harsh demeanor and abrasive criticisms of people he does not see eye-to-eye with politically.
McCain is currently undergoing treatment against an aggressive form of brain cancer called glioblastoma – so Stone’s tweet will likely be met with fury from the Senator’s friends and family.
Trump tweeted out the news that he had decided to pardon the the 85-year-old Friday night, writing: ‘Arpaio’s life and career, which began at the age of 18 when he enlisted in the military after the outbreak of the Korean War, exemplify selfless public service.
‘Throughout his time as Sheriff, Arpaio continued his life’s work of protecting the public from the scourges of crime and illegal immigration.
‘Sheriff Joe Arpaio is now eighty-five years old, and after more than fifty years of admirable service to our Nation, he is worthy candidate for a Presidential pardon.’
Arpaio, who campaigned for Trump in 2016, was convicted by a judge who ruled he had willfully violated a 2011 injunction barring his officers from stopping and detaining Latino motorists solely on suspicion that they were in the country illegally.
The former sheriff was facing up to six months in prison after he admitted to inadvertently disobeying the court order.
But he said the prosecution was a politically motivated attempt by the Obama administration to undermine his re-election bid.
Arpaio, who campaigned for Trump in 2016, was convicted by a judge who ruled he had willfully violated a 2011 injunction barring his officers from stopping and detaining Latino motorists solely on suspicion that they were in the country illegally. Arpaio and Trump are pictured together in January 2016 during the presidential campaign
On Friday night Trump tweeted his decision to pardon Arpaio, citing his long history of public service
In his statement McCain recognizes Trump’s authority to issue a pardon, but says it was the wrong decision because Arpaio ‘has shown no remorse for his actions.’
The full statement reads: ‘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.’
Trump was initially lambasted by Democrats who accused the President of using his executive power to absolve one of the country’s most polarizing figures as Hurricane Harvey was set to hit the Gulf Coast
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) accused trump of using the ‘cover of the storm’ to pardon Arpaio
His condemnation of the president’s decision came as dozens of politicians from across the aisle spoke out against the pardon.
Trump was initially lambasted by Democrats who accused the President of using his executive power to absolve one of the country’s most polarizing figures as Hurricane Harvey was set to hit the Gulf Coast.
‘Donald Trump just gave a free pass to his buddy Joe Arpaio, the nation’s most notorious agent of racism and bigotry, during a natural disaster that could hurt millions. That’s not presidential, that’s a coward,’ Chairman of the Democratic National Committee Tom Perez said in a statement.
‘Sheriff Arpaio used racial profiling to tear apart immigrant families and devastate Latino communities. At the same time, he failed to investigate hundreds of crimes, including dozens of reported child molestations,’ he added.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) accused the President of ‘using the cover of the storm’ to pardon Arpaio, 85, who was recently convicted of criminal contempt for unlawfully profiling Latinos.
‘As millions of people in TX and LA are prepping for the hurricane, the President is using the cover of the storm to pardon a man who violated a court’s order to stop discriminating against Latinos and ban courageous transgender men and women from serving our nation’s Armed Forces. Then he ran to Camp David,’ Schumer wrote in a series of tweets.
‘The only reason to do these right now is to use the cover of Hurricane Harvey to avoid scrutiny. So sad, so weak,’ he added.
Joe Arpaio for his part thanked the President, saying that his conviction was the result of an Obama era ‘witch hunt’
Apaio earlier Friday thanked the President for the pardon, claiming in a tweet that the conviction was the result of an Obama era ‘witch hunt.’
‘Thank you @realdonaldtrump for seeing my conviction for what it is: a political witch hunt by holdovers in the Obama justice department!’
Trump’s announcement came on Friday evening as most media turned to cover Hurricane Harvey, which is predicted to cause devastating damage to the southern coast.
Friday also saw the President sign a controversial executive order earlier Friday banning transgendered individuals from enlisting in the armed forces – reversing yet another Obama initiative.