Archive for Saturday, August 26, 2017

Kobach, author of controversial Arizona law, defends Arpaio pardon

In the AP file photo at left, from January 2016, then Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, left, is joined by then Maricopa County, Ariz., Sheriff Joe Arpaio. At right, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach is shown in his office in Topeka in May 2017.

In the AP file photo at left, from January 2016, then Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, left, is joined by then Maricopa County, Ariz., Sheriff Joe Arpaio. At right, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach is shown in his office in Topeka in May 2017.

August 26, 2017


— Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who was at the center of a controversial anti-illegal immigration law in Arizona that led to a criminal contempt conviction against Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, is now defending President Donald J. Trump's decision to pardon Arpaio.

"Joe Arpaio steadfastly enforced the law while the Obama administration rewarded illegal immigration and even (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) agents to break the law. A pardon is therefore appropriate," Kobach said in a text message to the Journal-World in response to a request for comment.

In 2010, Arizona passed a law, commonly known as the "papers please" law, said that anyone police suspected of being in the country illegally must produce proof of legal presence or face arrest.

Critics said the law encouraged police to engage in racial profiling, and portions of the law were eventually overurned by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Kobach also worked on contract for the Maricopa County Sheriff's Department, earning $300 per hour to train law enforcement officers there on procedures in arresting suspected illegal immigrants, the Journal-World reported in April of that year. That was six months before he was elected secretary of state, a time when he was working as a private attorney.

Kobach was re-elected as secretary of state in 2014 and is now a Republican candidate for governor.

In 2011, a federal judge found Arpaio's officers were racially profiling Latino drivers, and he ordered Arpaio to stop detaining immigrants simply because they lacked proof of legal presence. However, for the next 18 months, his deputies continued the practice.

In July, Arpaio, who is now 85, was convicted of criminal contempt, a misdemeanor, for defying the judge's order. He was scheduled to be sentenced in October and could have faced up to six months in jail.

Friday evening, though, Trump granted Arpaio a pardon.

"I am pleased to inform you that I have just granted a full Pardon to 85 year old American patriot Sheriff Joe Arpaio," Trump posted on Twitter at 8 p.m. central time Friday. "He kept Arizona safe!"

None by Donald J. Trump


Phillip Chappuie 6 months, 3 weeks ago

Here is just one more reason Kris Kobach should never be elected to anything ever. Joe Arpaio systematically denied American citizens their fourth amendment rights and was order by a judge to stop and ignored. Kobach wants to speak of law? Apparently the Supreme Court of the United States doesn't think Kobach knows what he is talking about. And the President yet again goes out of his way to defend the actions of a racist.

Teri Griffin-Guntert 6 months, 3 weeks ago

Phillip, please help my memory... What are the cases that you are referring to and please give the documentation of each case. Thanks

Caitlin Moran 6 months, 3 weeks ago

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Louie White 6 months, 3 weeks ago

Look it up for yourself, I'm calling you out for your passive aggressive entreaty of Mr. Chappuie implying that his statement doesn't have merit unless he proves it to you. The article summarily explained the case law, it's up to you look up the case if you don't believe the Journal World, not Mr. Chappuie.

Kevin Millikan 6 months, 3 weeks ago

Agree with Louie, there is plenty of case research out there, look it up yourself.

Fred Whitehead Jr. 6 months, 3 weeks ago

Kobach is just another supporter of the Klan and the American Nazi Party. (maybe even a closet card-carrying member, you think??)

What you possibly ever expect from this fascist??

This guy is the biggest missing employee of the State of Kansas. Anyone else would have been fired by now.

Phillip Chappuie 6 months, 3 weeks ago

If Kobach worked for me I would have let him go for job abandonment.

MerriAnnie Smith 6 months, 3 weeks ago

I would have bet real money he'd do that. One thing about Kobach... he's consistent. If it's unethical, he's all for it.

MerriAnnie Smith 6 months, 3 weeks ago

Ever wonder why criminal-minded, unethical people sometimes want to be involved in things having to do with the law?

Seems like their minds are messed up in more ways than one.

Teri Griffin-Guntert 6 months, 3 weeks ago

Sounds like you are describing most all Cabinet, Senate and House Representatives on ALL AILES.

MerriAnnie Smith 6 months, 3 weeks ago

I've noticed a few who aren't completely sold out to a lack of ethics, and of those who do appear to be unethical, few appear to be as unethical as Kobach (and add Trump to that as well).

Calvin Anders 6 months, 3 weeks ago

So not only is Krissy a racist who wants to marginalize whole segments of the population to prevent them from voting, he also supports the use of Presidential pardon to forward a political agenda. I do hope Kansas voters see that Kobach is not only a Trump supporter, he is also a Trump desciple. Kobach has the same level of respect for the law and respect for personal rights as the Trumpster. If elected governor, Kobach will bring the same level of honesty and care to the office as Trump has brought to the Presidency. Kobach has made it clear that he is not merely tolerating Trumps alt-right pandering, Kobach is completely on board.

Paul Beyer 6 months, 3 weeks ago

Sadder yet, this POS will get elected gov because the average ignorant Kansas voter will vote for him since he has an R after his name on the ballot. The stupid gene runs thru genome of most Kansas voters.

Teri Griffin-Guntert 6 months, 3 weeks ago

We are getting used to unbalanced propaganda driven opinions over journalistic news in the LJW which is no longer the upstanding world news it has been over the years.

Louie White 6 months, 3 weeks ago

Stop trolling by support fascism with your "two wrongs make a right" victim argument. He defied orders of a Federal Judge. Move out of town if you don't our journalism.

MerriAnnie Smith 6 months, 3 weeks ago

You know, Teri, people can see right through your blame of the news media for the wrong-doings of YOUR chosen politicians.

I would think ethical people would want ethical government leaders, but then I guess there are enough unethical people around to keep their like-kind in office.

Calvin Anders 6 months, 2 weeks ago

Teri, I don't see how LJW is putting any spin on this story. It is unflattering for Kobach to endorse Trump's pardoning of Arpaio and it doesn't reflect terribly well on Kobach for having authored Arizona's "papers please" law. But those are facts, not opinions. There isn't any conjecture in the article. How would you have had LJW report this? Is there a way these details could have been reported in an objective way that casts Kobach in a more positive light? I suppose one could have pointed out that as far as we know, Kobach hasn't burned down any orphanages.

Michael Kort 6 months, 3 weeks ago

To anyone who wants to break the orders of a Federal Judge Trump has just said to go ahead and do it again if I agree with you because The Donald is the new judge in town !

The Chief Executive has just replaced the Judicial Branch of Government with HIMSELF ( not mentioned in the Constitution as to how to justify that ) and he did it before the accused was even sentenced or had a chance to appeal a judges ruling in the matter in a higher court .

I believe in the Separation of the Three Powers as the Constitution dictates and I think that Trump is attempting replacing the Judicial Branch of government with HIMSELF .

I think that it is time for Congress to impeach Trump for trying to make this a Single Power in .......Himself, Himself and Himself .

At the rate that he is going sooner or later Trump will get around to finding an emergent reason to declaring himself as the Supreem Ruler ( I bet that he is envious of Kim ) and to dissolving by edict The Congress and The Courts .

Dictators always turn on their supporters and Trump is no exception to the rule ......anyone notice that..........I wonder if Koback is figuring that out ?

Dictators can not stand anyone else having power around themselves for long and Kobach is going to learn that one the hard way .

Michael Kort 6 months, 3 weeks ago

If Trump likes what you do he can stop a judge from sentencing you for doing it ......and in effect,...... suspend any law that he wants to !

Make no mistake,......... Trump is testing the waters of what he can get away with !

Phillip Chappuie 6 months, 2 weeks ago

For Ms. Griffin-Gunter, here is one to start on:

and then there is this:

The picture becomes clear very easily that Arpaio created and cultivated a system that regularly violated the civil rights of Latino citizens. You do understand what racial profiling is, right? I'm not sure what you mean about cases. I'm sure google can be your friend and if you dig deep enough, can probably find listings of fourth amendment violations. He was quite obviously a horrible, horrible man.

Brock Masters 6 months, 2 weeks ago

For those complaining about Trump's pardon of Arpaio help me understand how it is different than any other presidential pardon. In the majority of the past pardons, a person committed a crime, was convicted and sentenced to jail by a judge.

The pardon in all those cases overturned the judge's authority and nullified the conviction.

Obama pardoned people I would not have pardoned but I never suggested that he was a dictator or fascist because he did it. So help me understand why Trump is a dictator, a fascist and deserves impeachment for doing what other presidents have done?

MerriAnnie Smith 6 months, 2 weeks ago

He did it while the man was still being investigated.

In pardoning him at that time Trump obstructed justice.

Our justice system is not perfect but it's nevertheless a good system. It's imperfections are primarily where human beings don't do the right thing. The justice system we have is meant to do the right thing.

But it happens that innocent people are sometime convicted, and sometimes the sentences are far worse than the crime deserves. Smoking marijuana or taking any other drug so that someone hurts themselves, but there was no other victim, should never put anybody in prison for most of their lives, but it happens.

Presidents who have good ethics won't pardon someone who has hurt as many people as Arpaio has hurt.

They are generally very careful not to do that. But some presidents have pardoned some criminals who truly did not deserve it. Ford's pardon on Nixon, for example.

Trump pardoned Arpaio because Arpaio supported his candidacy. Trump is all for anybody who is all for him.

Obama didn't pardon a single person who helped him win the presidency. His pardons were not self-centered and egotistical. They were based on whether Obama believed justice had been served or not.

That is the difference you ask about.

Theodore Calvin 6 months, 2 weeks ago

I don't have exact statistics, but I feel like most presidential pardons have occurred due to giant conflicts between current sentencing laws/punishments and older ones, or serious grievances with the original way the individual was prosecuted. People previously prosecuted under the harsher laws were "pardoned" to have their sentences commuted to fall in line with the newer ways of sentencing guidelines, or new revelations were considered and the person cleared.

In this instance it was blatant disregard for the law, no new revelations as to sentencing guidelines or facts in the case, and no time even served to have any of his debt paid. I think Kobach has even uttered the phrase, "ignorance of the law is not an excuse," which is the exact argument Arpaio is using. I could be completely wrong, but I don't believe Obama pardoned anyone who hadn't served some of their time, and who specifically defied a judges personal orders to them regarding their enforcement of the law. Arpaio thought he was above the law and this just reinforces his and Kobach's disregard for the law they are sworn to protect/uphold.

Brock Masters 6 months, 2 weeks ago

Theodore, thanks for the response.

Here are my thoughts. President Trump was concerned that Arpiao was not allowed a jury trial so that fits with one of your criteria.

Obama pardoned Manning who was convicted of espionage. She betrayed her country. Sure she served some time but her crime was a very serious one. Obama also pardoned people convicted of gun possession laws.

Clinton pardoned Marc Rich who fled to Switzerland to avoid prosecution and served no jail time. His wife was a Clinton contributor.

Ford pardoned Nixon who didn't serve any jail time.

I can understand why you may not like the pardon but I cannot understand why his pardon is much different than other presidential pardons. Why is he a dictator and the others not?

Theodore Calvin 6 months, 2 weeks ago

Isn't it fully within the judges discretion to assign consequences for having their directives blatantly disregarded? I don't think the fact a judge assigned a jail sentence for contempt of court is anything new, or egregious, and certainly not grounds for the president to step in and usurp the power of the court.

Arpaio knew the consequences for his actions. He works in law enforcement, he is well aware of how the court system works. It was his personal choice to disregard the law he is supposed to uphold. That's what irks me, that the law apparently applies to whatever Arpaio decided it would, or so he thought. Then when called out by the court system he said he wouldn't listen, didn't listen and did what he wanted anyways, then got called out again and there was actually punishment. Now his behavior, and Kobach's to a lesser degree, have been reinforced by having no disincentive. Kobach's M.O. has continually been to thumb his nose at the law, and he is an attorney.

As for Manning's offenses, now you're wading into degrees of right and/or wrong based on your own opinion. In some people's eyes discrimination and using their law enforcement powers to carry out a personal agenda are much more serious than releasing some information to wikileaks. Again, degrees of right or wrong based on opinion.

Brock Masters 6 months, 2 weeks ago

In Arpaio case the judge didn't let him have a trial by jury and required a bench trial.

As for Manning, it is not my opinion on right or wrong. Manning was tried and convicted of a crime - espionage. If the litmus test is not whether they were fairly convicted but whether you or I agree that what they did was wrong then that same standard can be applied to Arpiao.

What about Marc Rich and Clinton? Not a day in jail, fled to Switzerland and wife was a donor. Is Clinton a fascist or dictator?

I understand that you may not like what Trump did just like I didn't like some of the pardons that Obama and Clinton did, but unlike others on here I don't think that makes them a dictator or a fascist.

Principles should not be based on politics. If pardoning a criminal that served no time in jail makes a president a fascist dictator then all who do it are also fascist dictators.

Theodore Calvin 6 months, 2 weeks ago

I understand that Manning was tried and convicted. What I am saying is that treason being a much more serious crime is somewhat opinion. It may "rank" higher as far as penalties and statutes state, but some would argue that using their elected power as a sheriff to carry out a personal agenda and violate the constitutional rights of citizens is much more unscrupulous than releasing some papers.

As for Marc Rich v Arpaio, I personally believe that someone sneakily using their powers as a sworn officer to systemically influence, discriminate, and fulfill a personal agenda with a middle finger up to the courts is much worse than greedily committing financial crimes. We expect more out of law enforcement. They are there to protect. We have come to expect nothing less from Wall Street types. Doesn't mean that Marc Rich isn't any less deserving or more deserving of a pardon. Bottom line is they are both criminals, but the "he did it first" argument shouldn't be a valid reason either. And for the record, I am not and did not ever defend the pardon of Marc Rich either.

Brock Masters 6 months, 2 weeks ago

Theodore I am not defending Arpaio or Trump. I am merely pointing out the hypocrisy of those who call Trump a dictator for pardoning Arpaio but not having done the same with past presidents.

I went back in time to show you that other presidents met your criteria for a bad pardon, not to justify the Arpaio pardon.

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