PHOENIX — A billionaire hedge fund tycoon has poured at least $3 million into campaigns to beat Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio and County Attorney Bill Montgomery, according to a report.
Political news website Politico reported that New Yorker George Soros’ influential political action committee has contributed $2 million to anti-Arpaio efforts and about $1 million against Montgomery. Both are Republican.
Other investors in the PAC include the widow of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.
The report went to say that Maricopa Strong had spent more money on this battle than any other. Soros’ group has financially supported Democrats in law enforcement across the country.
Arpaio, 84, is running for a seventh term. His opponent, Paul Penzone, ran against Arpaio in 2012 and captured almost 45 percent of the votes, the closest any rival has come to the incumbent.
After registering in Arizona in late August, Maricopa Strong began pushing against the lawman in a big way in September, when it began sending out mailers to Phoenix-area voters, followed by TV attack ads.
The anti-Arpaio flier accused him of being “obsessed with immigrants at the expense of his job” and of making “immigrant communities scared to report crime for fear they will be harassed by the Sheriff’s Office.”
Politico wrote Arpaio has spent $2.8 million on TV ads. As of August, he had raised $10 million for his re-election campaign, the majority of it coming from outside Arizona.
The group is chaired by former New York and Virginia prosecutor Whitney Tymas.