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Arizona sheriff Arpaio asks appeals court to void contempt finding

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Joe Arpaio, the Arizona lawman who drew national prominence for his hard-line stance against illegal immigration but lost his bid for a seventh term in office, has asked a federal appeals court to throw out a civil contempt finding.

In a Tuesday filing with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Arpaio, the sheriff of Maricopa County, and two of his top officers said U.S. District Judge Murray Snow in Phoenix overstepped his authority in holding them in contempt for violating court orders stemming from a 2007 racial profiling case.

Arpaio also said the judge went too far by ordering “extraordinarily intrusive” reforms to his office’s internal affairs operations and the reopening of closed cases.

Snow should also be disqualified for making repeated improper communications and creating an appearance of bias, including that he “hated” Arpaio, the sheriff said.

The case centers on allegations that Arpaio’s office failed to comply with court orders meant to curb alleged racial profiling of Latino drivers stemming from the sheriff’s immigration patrols.

Plaintiffs have until Jan. 23 to respond to Arpaio’s filing. The U.S. Department of Justice has joined the appeals process on the plaintiffs’ side.

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In October, a different federal judge ordered Arpaio to stand trial for criminal contempt. A trial in that case is scheduled for April 4.

Arpaio, 84, a Republican who has proclaimed himself “America’s toughest sheriff,” will end his 24-year tenure on Sunday, after losing his reelection bid to former Phoenix police officer Paul Penzone, a Democrat, in November.

The civil appeal is Ortega et al v Arpaio et al, 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, No. 16-16663. The criminal contempt case is U.S. v. Arpaio et al, U.S. District Court, District of Arizona, No. 16-cr-01012.

(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Leslie Adler)

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MSNBC guest ridicules Trump-fan Steve Cortes as possible Sarah Sanders replacement: ‘He’s a nut — have you seen him on TV?’

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Discussing the departure of Donald Trump's spokesperson Sarah Sanders from the White House, an MSNBC panel surveyed her possible replacements with one ridiculed for his appearances on TV defending the president.

Speaking with "AM Joy" fill-in host Jonathan Capehart, The Beat DC host Tiffany Cross shot former Trump associate Stever Cortes -- a regular on CNN -- as a possible candidate.

"There are names that are out there," Capehart suggested. "[Meliania Trump spokesperson] Stephanie Grisham and Hogan Gidley and Steve Cortes."

Pointing out that Grisham is the most likely contender, and the Trump would probably prefer a woman, Cross called out Cortes for his TV appearances.

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CNN

‘It’s voter discouragement’: Jake Tapper says Trump efforts to curb Dem votes doesn’t count as ‘suppression’

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CNN host Jake Tapper on Sunday disagreed with the notion that President Donald Trump and Russians tried to "suppress" Democratic votes by engaging in what he called large-scale voter "discouragement."

During a panel discussion on CNN, Democratic analyst Jennifer Granholm slammed Trump's campaign for "voter suppression."

"The thing that concerns me about the launch, Jake, of this new — of his re-election [campaign], he has already raised $100 million," Granholm said of Trump. "His campaign manager, Brad Parscale, who ran the digital campaign last time around, said that this time this campaign is going to be bigger, better and badder."

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2020 Election

Can at least half the 2020 Democrats please quit right now?

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OK, Democrats — you’ve had your fun. You grew up being told that everybody could run for president, and then everybody did. Except that this mad anthill scramble of presidential candidates, which resembles a bunch of kindergarteners descending on not enough cookies, really hasn’t been fun so far. All you’ve managed to do is put the fear of God — or the fear of the other guy, more like — into the voters, provoking widespread PTSD flashbacks to November 2016.

This article first appeared in Salon.

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