In a radio interview recorded Thursday, Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio backed up some of Donald Trump’s remarks about illegal immigrants while defending the real estate moguls’ “right to voice his opinion.”
Arpaio stated, “There’s no lie about the drugs coming from Mexico.”
“Everybody knows that,” he said. “I talk about it all the time. The majority of the drugs coming into my county, they are from Mexico. So that’s a true statement.”
Arpaio further asserted his belief that Trump did not mean “to say anything derogatory about all the great people from Mexico.”
The outspoken sheriff said it was “amusing to see all the heat because [Trump] made a few statements.”
“And I presume he is not going to back down. I would imagine he is going to continue to voice his opinion,” Arpaio said.
The famous sheriff was being interviewed for “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio,” broadcast on New York’s AM 970 The Answer and Philadelphia’s NewsTalk 990 AM.
The full interview will air on Klein’s Sunday night Independence weekend broadcast. WND obtained an advanced copy of the audio.
NBC, Univision and Macy’s severed their relationships with Trump following remarks he made about illegal immigrants when he announced his run for president.
“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best,” Trump said. “They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”
In a statement to Fox News.com, Trump labeled NBC as “weak and foolish” for ending its relationship with him.
WND reported earlier this week the “Dump Trump” campaign urging Macy’s to sever ties was organized by professional progressive agitators with a history of dubious anti-conservative campaigning, including charges of misleading the public about the actual numbers of protest supporters.
Asked to comment on the Trump controversy, Arpaio said he believed the billionaire was being singled out and held to a higher standard because of his presidential run.
“I presume if he wasn’t running you would not see this much controversy from the media,” Arpaio said. “I can understand his frustration. We do have a problem. Drugs coming across the border and the illegal immigration problem.”
Arpaio said Trump “wants to do something about the illegal immigration and the drug traffic.”
“So there’s no lie about the drugs coming from Mexico. Everybody knows that,” he said. “I talk about it all the time. The majority of the drugs coming into my county, they are from Mexico. So that’s a true statement.”
Regarding Trump’s full comments, Arpaio stated: “I don’t know. The other things he said are maybe controversial. There are good people in Mexico. Many of them are good people. The majority of them come here to find jobs, but they should not violate the law. They should do that legally. So that’s just common sense, too.”
Listen to a brief clip of Klein’s interview with Arpaio:
Klein asked for Arpaio’s reaction to the decision by Univision, NBC and Macy’s to cut business ties with Trump and reports the city of New York is reviewing its contracts with Trump’s businesses.
“I thought we have freedom of speech in this country,” replied Arpaio. “And he’s running for president. He has a right to voice his opinion.”
Arpaio added that Trump “did talk about the birth certificate in the past.”
“You know I’ve been working on that. So I don’t know. I guess you got to be politically correct when you run for office,” he said.
“But once again, I don’t believe he meant to say anything derogatory about all the great people from Mexico. And I lived there, as I said, as the head of the federal drug enforcement.”
Arpaio compared Trump’s situation to his own.
“Of course, a lot of the activists, Hispanics, don’t like me.”
He continued: “But I’m trying to do my job, and that’s why I took office. But it’s amusing to see all the heat because he made a few statements. And I presume he is not going to back down. I would imagine he is going to continue to voice his opinion.”
Arpaio is the six-time elected sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona. He is also an outspoken advocate for strong enforcement of immigration law. A Justice Department investigation previously accused him of racial profiling, a charge upheld in a federal court.
Trump and Arpaio have both claimed President Obama’s birth certificate may be forged. Arpaio’s office has been investigating the birth certificate since 2011.