NHDP Statement: Sununu & GOP leaders need to immediately condemn Trump's unjustified Arpaio
Concord, N.H. - Late last night, as Hurricane Harvey was making landfall in the United States, President Trump pardoned imprisoned Maricopa County sheriff, Joe Arpaio. Arpaio had been convicted of discriminatory and abusive practices as sheriff, including forcing inmates to wear pink underwear, work on chain gangs, and sleep outside in a "Tent City" jail he himself favorably compared to a concentration camp. Arpaio attended a Nashua City Republicans event in 2010, attended by former Senator Kelly Ayotte, former Congressman Charlie Bass, New Hampshire State Senator Bob Giuda and former New Hampshire Republican Party Chair Jennifer Horn. NHDP Chair Ray Buckley issued the following statement: "President Trump's pardon of Sheriff Joe Arpaio in the midst of a hurricane on a Fridayevening is as cowardly and disgraceful a decision as he's made. In the wake of Charlottesville, Trump continues to show not just his tolerance for hate, but his explicit endorsement of it. His pardon is a wink and a nod to law enforcement around the country that, if you discriminate against and abuse people unlawfully, you will be rescued from prison by the President of the United States. There is no justification for Trump's pardon and anyone who tries to defend it is defending criminal discrimination with clear eyes. America should no longer let Republicans get away with silence or delayed, calculated responses. Like Charlottesville, this is an event so egregious it requires a response from the country and anything less than rapid and direct condemnation deserves no praise or credit. New Hampshire Republicans as prominent as Kelly Ayotte and Jennifer Horn embraced Arpaio upon his 2010 visit to the state, which makes it especially important for Republican leaders to make their condemnation crystal clear. New Hampshire is looking toward Governor Sununu, Republican leaders and NHGOP to stand up and say something before Trump's decision resonates as standard operating procedure in America going forward."