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Federal judge upholds ruling finding Joe Arpaio guilty of racial profiling, targeting opponents

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A federal judge gave the U.S. Justice Department a partial victory on Monday in its lawsuit against Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio that alleges sweeping civil rights violations.

In a written ruling, U.S. District Judge Roslyn Silver let stand the findings of another federal judge in a separate 2007 lawsuit filed by civil rights groups. The judge in that case ruled Arpaio’s deputies racially profiled Latino drivers and unlawfully detained them.

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Silver said she would not allow the parties to relitigate the allegations involving the “discriminatory traffic stop claims” in granting the request for summary judgment made by Justice Department attorneys.

The Justice Department filed its suit in May 2012 alleging that the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, run by Arpaio, intentionally engaged in racial profiling and unlawful arrest of Latinos, violating their constitutional rights.

It also accused the office of routinely violating the rights of political opponents by targeting them with unsubstantiated complaints and lawsuits, including arresting them.

The lawsuit further alleged that Arpaio’s deputies discriminated against Latino inmates with limited English proficiency.

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Those latter claims will be the focus of a trial set to begin before Silver on Aug. 10 in federal court in Phoenix.

Arpaio, who bills himself as “America’s Toughest Sheriff,” denies the allegations and pledged to fight “to the bitter end” when the Justice Department’s lawsuit was filed.

An Arpaio spokeswoman declined comment on Monday’s ruling, and his attorney could not immediately be reached.

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The decision is the latest legal setback for the 83-year-old lawman, who is fighting civil contempt proceedings by another federal judge as part of the separate 2007 racial profiling case, which was filed by civil rights groups on behalf of Latino drivers.

Frustrated by violations of his court orders in that case, Judge Murray Snow held contempt hearings in April against Arpaio and four others in the case.

But further proceedings were put on hold after lawyers for Arpaio and an aide asked that Snow be removed after what they called decisions that could be seen as biased.

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(Reporting by David Schwartz; Editing by Daniel Wallis and Peter Cooney)


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2020 Election

‘I don’t care’: Watch Kamala Harris shut down Chris Hayes for asking a dumb question about Trump

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Sen. Kamala Harris shut down MSNBC anchor Chris Hayes during a post-debate interview on Tuesday evening.

Hayes questioned Harris about her call for Twitter to follow their terms of service and kick President Donald Trump off of the platform.

"Do you think he puts people’s lives in danger when he targets them in tweets?" Hayes asked.

"Absolutely," Harris replied.

"Do you think he knows that?" Hayes asked.

"Does it matter?" Harris replied.

"The fact is he did it. The fact is that he is irresponsible, he is erratic," she explained. "He is like a 2-year-old with a machine gun."

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2020 Election

Democrats blast Trump and demand his impeachment at CNN debate

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Democratic White House hopefuls united in searing condemnation of Donald Trump during their fourth debate Tuesday, saying the president has broken the law, abused his power, and deserves to be impeached.

From the opening moments, most of the dozen candidates on stage launched fierce broadsides against Trump over the Ukrainian scandal at the heart of the impeachment inquiry.

"The impeachment must go forward," said Senator Elizabeth Warren, who is neck and neck with former vice president Joe Biden at the head of the 2020 nominations race.

"Impeachment is the way that we establish that this man will not be permitted to break the law over and over without consequences," she thundered.

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2020 Election

Here are 3 winners and 4 losers from the CNN/NYT Democratic presidential primary debate

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Twelve Democrats took to the stage Tuesday night for yet another debate in the party's 2020 president primary hosted by CNN and the New York Times.

After only ten candidates qualified for the previous debate, an additional two — Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard and wealthy donor and former hedge fund manager Tom Steyer — made it to the stage this round for an even more crowded event.

The candidates discussed a range of important policy issues, but since the format was a debate, and they're all competing for the same nomination, it is ultimately most critical who won and who lost the night. Here are three winners and four losers — necessarily a subjective assessment, of course — from the debate:

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