DNC chair: 'Accused child molester' and 'convicted criminal' the best GOP have to offer

DNC chair: 'Accused child molester' and 'convicted criminal' the best GOP have to offer
© Getty Images

Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairman Tom PerezThomas Edward PerezClinton’s top five vice presidential picks Government social programs: Triumph of hope over evidence Labor’s 'wasteful spending and mismanagement” at Workers’ Comp MORE on Tuesday swiftly condemned former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio's (R) entrance into the Arizona Senate race, targeting Republicans for supporting both Arpaio and former Alabama Senate candidate Roy MooreRoy Stewart MooreRoy Moore wants judge who ruled against him removed from case The Hill's Morning Report - Lawmakers split over Mueller findings: 'case closed' vs. 'cover-up' Roy Moore 'seriously considering' another Senate bid MORE (R).

In a statement released Tuesday afternoon by the DNC, Perez accused the GOP of not being able to find better candidates for office than an "accused child molester" and a "racist former sheriff."

“It’s a sad and disturbing sign of moral decay in the modern Republican Party that a racist former sheriff and convicted criminal in Arizona and an accused child molester in Alabama are the best they have to offer," Perez said in the statement.

ADVERTISEMENT

"Joe Arpaio is one of our nation’s most notorious agents of racism and bigotry. He has spent his career tearing apart immigrant families and devastating Latino communities, and he has no place in the U.S. Senate," he added.

Moore, a former Alabama judge, was defeated in December by now-Sen. Doug Jones (D) in the state's special election. Moore's campaign was dogged by allegations that Moore engaged in sexual misconduct with teenage girls when he was a district attorney. Moore has denied the allegations.

Arpaio announced his candidacy earlier Tuesday, saying in a tweet that his main reason for running was to support President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump calls for Republicans to be 'united' on abortion Tlaib calls on Amash to join impeachment resolution Facebook temporarily suspended conservative commentator Candace Owens MORE's agenda in the Senate. Arpaio will run for the seat to be vacated by Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeProtesters who went viral confronting Flake cheered at award event Feinstein to introduce bill raising age to purchase assault weapons after California shooting Pollster says Trump unlikely to face 'significant' primary challenge MORE (R-Ariz.), who last year announced that he would not seek reelection.

"I am running for the U.S. Senate from the Great State of Arizona, for one unwavering reason: to support the agenda and policies of President Donald Trump in his mission to Make America Great Again," Arpaio tweeted Tuesday.

Arpaio's only challenger in the state Republican primary so far is former state Sen. Kelli Ward (R), who is endorsed by former White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon, but Rep. Martha McSallyMartha Elizabeth McSallySenate Republicans running away from Alabama abortion law McSally to introduce military sexual assault reform bill Dem Senate campaign arm hits GOP lawmakers over Trump tax law MORE (R-Ariz.) is also expected to jump into the race.

Trump won the state by 4 points in 2016. Arizona has not elected a Democratic senator since 1988.