County Attorney Montgomery backs Sheriff: Tells feds to “put up or shut up”
The page one banner headline in today’s issue of the Periódico de la República de Arizona (Arizona Republic) screams out: “Arpaio defies feds’ order.” Directly below that is this accompanying screed: “Court battle looms as sheriff refuses to let Justice Dept. monitor office.”
In this succinct comment, the duly elected, career law enforcement official responds to the ultimatum: “I am the constitutionally and legitimately elected Sheriff and I absolutely refuse to surrender my responsibility to the federal government,” he said in a letter the Justice Department. “And so to the Obama administration, who is attempting to strong arm me into submission only for its political gain, I say, ‘This will not happen, not on my watch!’”
The Arizona constitution, Article 12, Section 3 unequivocally states that the sheriff is elected by the people of the county he serves. Joe Arpaio has been reelected to an unprecedented five 4-year terms.
Last we heard, not a single person in the Obama administration’s Justice Department, including — U. S. Attorney General Eric Holder — has been elected to anything. They are appointed bureaucrats who are intent on swaggering their Obama-bestowed leftist heft while attempting to diminish legitimately elected officers of the law. Joe Arpaio is doing the job he has repeatedly been elected to do.
And Arpaio has the support of Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery who at a news conference today, accused federal officials of spreading misinformation and attempting to foment unrest in Maricopa County by alleging discriminatory police practices without providing proof to back up the accusations. “I want to make it absolutely clear: If the Department of Justice actually has information that supports their assertion that there continues to this day systemic concerns of discriminatory policing or racial profiling, I demand, I demand as the chief prosecutor of Maricopa County, I demand as the duly elected officer with responsibility for prosecutions, to be given that information immediately,” Montgomery stated. “This posturing, this playing hide the ball in the context of civil litigation, is disgusting, particularly when it involves criminal prosecutions.” Montgomery challenged the feds to “put up or shut up.”
A lesser man than Joe Arpaio would have taken the easy route and caved to these outrageous demands. Not so, Joe Arpaio.
County Attorney Bill Montgomery is a graduate of West Point Military Academy who has seen real combat before and is up to the job again.
The people of Maricopa County are fortunate.