01/10/2018 12:27 EST | Updated 01/12/2018 11:22 EST

The Latest: Arpaio notes similarities between him, Trump

PHOENIX — The Latest on former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio's announcement that he is running for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Jeff Flake (all times local):

3:15 p.m.

Former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio says he shares some of the qualities that have made President Donald Trump an effective politician.

Arpaio commented on the similarities Wednesday, a day after announcing his candidacy for U.S. Senate.

Arpaio noted his focus on immigration enforcement, a knack for saying things that would damage the careers of other politicians and a talent for garnering news coverage.

Arpaio says he and Trump have been persecuted by the U.S. Department of Justice.

He blames the agency for his conviction for defying a judge's order in an immigration case, though the charge was recommended by the judge, not a prosecutor.

Trump has attacked the Justice Department over the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election.


9:50 p.m.

Former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio's announcement that he'll run for the Senate seat being vacated by fellow Republican Jeff Flake potentially pits two conservative, pro-Donald Trump candidates against each other and could create an opening for a more moderate GOP contender to take the seat.

Arpaio made the announcement Tuesday, injecting new uncertainty and attention into the race that's already among the year's most-watched.

If Arpaio follows through and files his candidacy papers, the race could feature one of President Trump's most vocal supporters trying to replace one of his fiercest detractors. Flake has constantly criticized the president.

Until now, the Republican front-runner in the race has largely been considered to be Kelli Ward, a former state senator. Arpaio's entry could hurt her chances.