By Lisa Barron
PHOENIX, ARIZONA – Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio has slammed the Department of Homeland Security after a report revealed that federal agents last year released 68,000 immigrants with criminal records.
“You know, two weeks ago I had a press conference regarding this situation. I had the real facts because I analyzed the 1,300 inmates in our jails presently and out of 1,300, over 31 percent have come back multiple times,” he told Newsmax TV’s John Bachman and J.D. Hayworth on “America’s Forum” Tuesday.
“Over and over they come back on serious crimes, so evidently the Homeland Security and ICE are letting them out the back door, or they’re deporting them, and they keep coming back, so there’s a problem.”
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Arpaio, the six-time elected sheriff of Arizona’s Maricopa County, said he is sending the records to Homeland Security and demanding answers.
The self-styled “toughest sheriff” in America revealed that while he is still considering a bid for governor, he will not challenge Sen. John McCain, who has advocated amnesty and received a vote of disapproval from the Arizona GOP for not being conservative enough.
“I’ve been in Washington three times, I was a Regional Director in Mexico, South America, all over the place. I don’t want to go back to Washington. I’ll tell you one thing, if I don’t run for governor, I’m running for sheriff in 2016. I’m against amnesty, and I come right out and say it. We should enforce the laws, change the laws.”
Asked about claims by the Obama administration that it has deported more people than any other in history in light of the new report, Arpaio replied, “Smoke and mirrors, because the president, when a guy hops over the fence, crosses the border, dumps them back over and he’s taking credit as a deportation. I don’t know what his motive is, but the point is, he’s come up with all these executive orders circumventing Congress and everything else, so something has to change.
“But I’m going to keep doing my job. I’m the only one going into businesses and locking up people that are here illegally with fake identification, and there’s been some court decisions against me, but we’ll see what happens in the future,” Arpaio said.