Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., on Tuesday dismissed former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s bid for the Republican nomination to replace him in the Senate, and said he'll fizzle out as a candidate.
“Write about it fast because it won’t last long,” Flake told reporters at the Capitol after attending a meeting at the White House on immigration.
Arpaio joins former state Sen. Kelli Ward in the race for the seat after Flake announced that he would not seek re-election last year.
The two have both earned praise from President Trump in the past, and Trump pardoned the former sheriff, who was convicted of criminal contempt due to his tactics while targeting illegal immigrants.
Arpaio, 85, served as county sheriff for 24 years before losing his re-election in 2016. He would be the oldest member of the Senate if elected in November.
He is not the only one announcing their intentions for the open Senate seat. Rep. Martha McSally, R-Ariz., is expected to announce her campaign for the seat later in the week.
The winner of the primary will likely face Rep. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., in a general election contest.