The political recall committee Respect Arizona reported today that they have already collected more than 200,000 signatures of registered voters in the final stretch to start the impeachment proceedings against the controversial Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
The group must submit 335,000 signatures by May 30th to be successful in their attempt to force a new election; so far they claim to have 200,359.
Arpaio, 80, was elected last November for a sixth term as the Maricopa County sheriff, located in the city of Phoenix, Arizona.
"This is the first believable effort to dismiss a person like Arpaio, who has remained in power for the past 20 years," said Lilia Alvarez, Respect Arizona representative, in a press release.
Alvarez said that the progress of the campaign has not gone unnoticed by the state Legislature, who last week rejected a bill that would have made the impeachment harder.
She said that despite all the threats, lies, lawsuits and legal actions to prevent Respect Arizona’s efforts, they will continue collecting signatures. The activist also denied the rumors that the campaign is being affected by the lack of funds.
Meanwhile, Arpaio sent a message to all of his supporters asking for their financial support in case that he would have to face a new election.
The sheriff is known for his tough position on illegal immigration, and continuously conducts operations against local business where he arrests workers that do not have "papers".
Currently, Arpaio is also facing a lawsuit by the U.S. Justice Department over allegations of racial profiling against Latino drivers.