Sheriff Paul Babeu announces campaign for Congress

Paul Babeu

Paul Babeu

Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu announced Oct. 5 he is running for Congress.

The two-term sheriff will vie for the open 1st Congressional District.

“I’ve spent seven years fighting Washington’s inaction and now it’s time to bring the fight directly to our nation’s capital,” Sheriff Babeu said in a press release. “I will work tirelessly to protect the residents of rural Arizona, shrink the federal government, overturn Obamacare and guard against attacks on the 2nd Amendment.”

The 1st Congressional District stretches from Flagstaff through the White Mountains and south to Pinal County and northern Pima County. The district is one of the largest in the country and encompasses rural and suburban areas plus several Native American tribes.

“The challenges facing CD1 stretch far beyond the district’s boundaries,” Sheriff Babeu said. “Illegal immigration impacts us all. I’ve stood on the front lines against the drug cartels and human smuggling rings and I will bring this same tenacious work ethic to Washington, D.C.”

The issues facing CD1 are as diverse as its people and regions. Sheriff Babeu said in the release he plans to work to improve forest health, ensure that the U.S. Forest Service is acting responsibly, increase job opportunities and fight overreach by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

“I will work to ensure the EPA deals fairly with Arizona,” he said. “Coal power plants provide much of the energy for rural Arizona and I will fight any misguided effort to shutter those plants and make it more expensive for residents and business to buy electricity.”

Sheriff Babeu is a veteran of the Iraq War and spent 20 years in the Army National Guard, rising to the rank of major. In addition, he commanded 700 troops on the Arizona-Mexico border as part of Operation Jump Start.

He began his law enforcement career as a city of Chandler police officer and eventually became the first Republican sheriff of Pinal County. Since taking office, sheriff’s deputies have seized more than 162,000 pounds of drugs, exposed an identity theft ring in the county recorders office and busted Superior Court personnel in a bribery scandal, according to the release.

Recent efforts are targeting the Sinaloa Cartel scouts occupying mountaintops along the drug and human smuggling corridor in an effort to provide safe passage as they head to other parts of the country.

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