Arpaio Considers Challenging Sen. Jeff Flake in Primary

He insists his age won't hold him back
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 28, 2017 3:15 PM CDT
Arpaio Considers Challenging Sen. Jeff Flake in Primary
In this Dec. 18, 2013, file photo, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio speaks at a news conference at the Sheriff's headquarters in Phoenix, Ariz.   (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)

From sheriff to convicted criminal to recipient of a presidential pardon to ... senator? Joe Arpaio discussed his future with the Washington Examiner Monday, and the controversial former Arizona lawman has some grand ambitions. "I could run for mayor, I could run for legislator, I could run for Senate," said Arpaio, noting that "a lot of people around the state" specifically want him to mount a primary challenge against Republican Sen. Jeff Flake in next year's election. Flake is a critic of President Trump, and Trump has been encouraging other Republicans to challenge his seat, the Hill reports.

The 85-year-old Arpaio wouldn't say how likely he is to run for any office, but insisted he has a lot of support. "Why do you say ‘wow'?" he said, referring to people reacting negatively to his age. "There is discrimination against senior citizens, big time," he added. "I work 14 hours a day. If anyone thinks my age is going to hold me back, I've got news for them. ... The bottom line is there's no way I'm going to go fishing. I have no hobbies." At Hot Air, Allahpundit thinks the idea of Arpaio challenging Flake is "bananas." "It’d be the most GOP thing ever to nominate a guy to be a first-term senator who’s deeply unpopular, a Birther, was facing jail time until he was pardoned, and would be in his 90s before his term is complete." (More Joe Arpaio stories.)

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