Sheriff Arpaio wants to talk to Hispanics

Nov. 10, 2012 at 5:11 PM
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PHOENIX, Nov. 10 (UPI) -- Phoenix-area Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who won a sixth term in office Tuesday, says he wants to try to explain his controversial policies on immigration to Latinos.

However, Arpaio also promised to continue the policies that have angered many Arizona Hispanics, The Arizona Republic reported Saturday.

Carlos Sierra, who was involved in an effort to defeat Arpaio -- although both men are Republican -- told the newspaper he found the sheriff's attempt to make peace unconvincing.

"You remember exactly what he said: 'As long as they don't yell at me.' If he's trying to reach out, he already kind of insulted us by saying we only shout at him," Sierra said. "I think the damage is done. I'm sure there are some people in the Hispanic community who might meet with him. He's not bringing anything to the table for us. He's already said he's not going to change."

Arpaio first gained a national reputation for his harsh treatment of jail inmates in Maricopa County. He has also been on a crusade to arrest illegal immigrants, leading to U.S. Justice Department charges of racial profiling, and more recently launched his own "investigation" into President Barack Obama's Hawaiian birth certificate.

A post-election article in the online magazine Slate put Arpaio at the top of a short list of people and institutions credited with helping re-elect Obama, by making the Republican Party look racist, extreme or silly. Arpaio beat out Donald Trump and conservative pundit Ann Coulter.

In an interview with the Republic after the election, Arpaio blamed the news media for his problems with Hispanics. He suggested his policies have been misrepresented and he has failed to communicate the truth.

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