He Calls Himself the ‘American Sheriff.’ Whose Law Is He Following?

Charismatic and ambitious, Mark Lamb embodies a new kind of Trump-era lawman.

10/16/2021 7:45:00 PM

This is the kind of sheriff whose calls to citizen action worry experts who see a segment of American law enforcement becoming a power base of its own — one that could further undermine trust in government authority

Charismatic and ambitious, Mark Lamb embodies a new kind of Trump-era lawman.

last year and says he “appreciate[s] those guys standing up for the rule of law, the Constitution and freedom,” doesn’t call himself a constitutional sheriff. Instead, his pro-sheriff messaging — with media savvy and Trump-y politics thrown in the mix — seems designed for a wider audience.

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There’s no question Lamb is a performer, but his calls to citizen action worry experts who see a segment of American law enforcement becoming a power base of its own — one that could further undermine trust in government authority. Devin Burghart, who runs the Institute for Research and Education on Human Rights, which analyzes far-right social movements, says understanding sheriffs like Lamb is important in “the long-term fight for democracy.” Researcher Cloee Cooper said Lamb’s highly politicized approach to his job is “ultimately undermining a safe and just society.” Asked about how supporters might interpret his anti-government messaging, Lamb told me, “I’m a very pro-freedom person. I believe in letting people live the way that they feel like they need to live.”

To spend time with Lamb is to realize just how far a lawman can drift from the law itself — and how little people seem to care, as long as he says the right stuff on TV. In fact, Lamb’s constituents seem to love him: He was unopposed when he ran for reelection last fall and won another four-year term headtopics.com

with 97 percent of the vote. Some locals here say he is focused more on playing a sheriff in the national spotlight than serving his constituents. But in a solidly conservative part of Arizona, Lamb so far has had plenty of leeway for more and more activities outside the county. He insists he doesn’t have political ambitions beyond the sheriff’s office, though. “You can actually effect change as the sheriff,” he says. “I’ve never had a desire to run for Senate or Congress,” Lamb told me at the café in Florence, before adding, “I’m a patriot at heart. I love America. And I will serve the people where I can.”

Another patron of the diner walked by. “Can we start calling you senator?” the man asked.“No, no. Please don’t. Sheriff’s good with me,” Lamb said, looking abashed, like any good politician should.Lamb fires his service pistol, a Glock 34. | Doug Barrett for POLITICO

We don’t go to a shooting range as much as an open, sandy field that Lamb says belongs to a friend of his. Pinal County is 5,400 square miles, roughly the size of Connecticut, and much of it is sand. Two weeks before, in mid-June, the temperature was a newsworthy 110-plus degrees. Today it’s closer to 100, and a faint whisp of cloud floats in the sky, daring itself to cover the blazing sun. Lamb loves it. He wears Wranglers, worn cowboy boots, a black shirt with rolled sleeves, a fully loaded tactical vest and a brown leather belt with “Sheriff Lamb” embossed across the back. He barely seems to sweat.

We’ve come to the range because shooting is Lamb’s favorite pastime.Pinal County Supervisor Jeff Serdy, who owns what he describes as a “very high-volume” gun shop in the area, told me, “You could not ask for a better advocate for the Second Amendment than Sheriff Lamb.” The back of Lamb’s black Chevy Silverado 2500 HD contains his workaday weaponry, including an AR-15 SBR. On his person, Lamb has a 9mm Glock pistol, plus a long knife, a taser, handcuffs and extra ammunition, including a magazine with a Punisher skull on it. headtopics.com

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Lamb says he was always interested in guns but didn’t plan for a law enforcement career. Descended from a long line of Mormons and still an “unabashed member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,” he grew up “all over the world,” he is fond of saying, including the Philippines, Panama and Argentina, where he did his Mormon mission. In his book, he describes spending much of his childhood in Hawaii, where, he told me, “I was a minority.”

Lamb, an ardent defender of the Second Amendment, practices at a shooting range in Pinal County, Ariz. | Doug Barrett for POLITICOLamb went through a variety of jobs, including running a paintball business in Utah that ultimately failed. After filing for bankruptcy in 2003, Lamb decided to “start again” in Arizona, he writes in his book, where he moved with his five kids and his wife, Janel — who today has her own book,

The Sheriff’s Wife Read more: POLITICO »

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We learned a lot from Easy Rider & these days have No Prob dealing with 'America's Sheriff' & his kind Which 'experts?' From the article, it seems the locals love him and that's all that matters. Why don't you worry about why Asian ladies get stabbed in the head while they walk through Times Square. After all that BS the bottom line is the people who live there like him. What elce matters? Not your cup of tea? Don't move there.

Or one that just don't take crap from anyone. Want closed borders. Wants what's good for his state and America. That scares the liberals. Shouldn’t he be wearing a brown shirt? You can tell he is auditioning for Walking Tall IV. 6 paragraphs of fluff before this: ‘Lamb supported the “stop the steal” campaign in Arizona and has expressed sympathy for the Jan. 6 rioters. He has called vaccine mandates “garbage” and spoke at a recent anti-vaccine rally’

In TX they are calling themselves 'constitutional' sheriffs and decide for themselves which laws to enforce according to that particular sheriff. I don’t know about that coz here in Texas just about everyone can own a gun🤔 more law enforcements are getting killed..because of guns! I'm not surprised this dude is Mormon. Almost all the men I ran into growing up in the church wanted to be like this.

Amazing the trump supporters on this thread don’t feel they need to be lawful and they are very proud of that fact. Republicans are ok with lawlessness.

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They’ve kicked around American Sheriff before. It’s a good idea. Like the U.S. Marshall. He thinks he IS the law. I wonder if he is a new sherriff. I was told by a cop that new law enforcement people often go thru a period where they think they are the law. He should be fired. He is not following American law

WE THE PEOPLE still means something to we the people. There is no confidence in the government. They have proven time and again, especially during emergencies, that the people need to take care of themselves because the government is too big and slow. Wannabe future warlord. Sounds like a movie. More like vigilantes protected by the Law!

Dangerous extremism taking us further down the authoritarian road. BECOMING Have you forgotten police reform and how far the powers that be allowed that to go? Some cops r honest hard working people some just below pond scum. End blanket immunity, no one should be above the law. If they refuse to clean their ranks, we will.

He looks like a sheriff does not mean he should be a sheriff.

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This is why oligarchs always need authoritarian governments to keep their power and money. Also called Fascism!! Always some white man trying to control others. “hardline approach on immigration … but when it comes to the government telling people to get vaccinated - or declaring the 2020 election legitimate - he fashions himself as more of a vigilante resister, with a heavy dose of anti-government, sometimes militant rhetoric.” scary

The Az Tx residents get ABSOLUTELY no help from the Federal Government.? Would you like immigrants walking through your property stealing off your porch, from your car? Breaking into your house.. We need men like this guy.. America's warlord more like it Becoming… it’s funny how you’re just now noticing. SEE: Civl Rights Movement

Big Fish in a Small Pond. Betcha he has An Ego Problem. So, he’s a trimmed down version of Joe Arpaio. Give him enough time and he’ll go down in flames like Arpaio. Another whack cult Very un-American if he is not following laws in the jurisdiction and ANY American should want him disciplined in the appropriate manner.

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Some of these guys were kicked out the military too. Get rid of 'em. Police That authority doesn’t exist politicalauthorityisanillusion becomeungovernable libertarian ancap agorism voluntaryism noslavesnomasters

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