George Soros has contributed $2 million to a group working to defeat Maricopa County, Az., Sheriff Joe Arpaio, the latest target of Soros’ big spending in local law enforcement campaigns, Politico reports. A Soros-funded PAC, Maricopa Strong, will file campaign finance documents today showing Soros’ multi-million dollar investment against Arpaio, along with $500,000 from Texas energy billionaires Laura and John Arnold and $250,000 from Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. The group had previously reported a $300,000 donation from Soros.
Soros has spent millions funding campaigns to defeat local prosecutors and elect new ones who back criminal justice reform measures. Soros-backed groups are spending big in three big-city district attorney races: Houston’s Harris County, where Soros has contributed over $1 million; Gilpin and Jefferson counties outside Denver, where Soros has given about $1.5 million to unseat an incumbent; and Phoenix, where a Soros-funded PAC has also spent over $1 million against the Republican district attorney, Bill Montgomery. Soros’ spending against Arpaio, a high-profile liberal bogeyman, is his single biggest investment in a local race this year, as well as the billionaire’s first effort against a sheriff. It folds in immigration reform, another policy passion of Soros’, alongside criminal justice reform. Arpaio made his name as an opponent of illegal immigration. He was charged by federal prosecutors last month with contempt of court for violating an order to halt discriminatory policing practices.