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Updated Aug 27, 2012 - 6:39 am

Arpaio to speak at zoo near GOP convention

Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio will address a large audience of delegates at the Republican National Convention in Tampa on Thursday, but the sheriff won't be delivering his speech on center stage.

The invitation-only reception for delegates from Western states will be held at the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa, where Arpaio plans to talk about the birther movement, among other things.

"I may calm it down a bit, but I will zero in on immigration and maybe if they ask about the birth certificate, which is still under investigation," he said.

Arpaio also said illegal immigration will be his focus because the president has reinvented the problem by allowing thousands of young illegal immigrants to stay in the United States.

"Illegal immigration is back in action again, which makes me happy, because it was dying and everybody wants it to die on both sides," he said.

Arpaio said he expects a healthy number of protestors to be at his appearance.

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About the Author


Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Have covered some of the biggest stories in Arizona including nine of the top 10 largest wildfires in state history. The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. Covered the Yarnell Hill Tragedy in June 2013 that left 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots dead.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges and Lonesome Dove.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, Texas Longhorns, The University of Montana Grizzlies.

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