Holocaust denier and neo-Nazi Art Jones is running for Congress in Illinois — and he is going to be the Republican nominee for the liberal third congressional district, over the objections of the Illinois Republican Party.
The district, which encompasses the southwest side of Chicago and neighboring suburbs, is represented by 7th-term veteran Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-IL). Lipinski is a moderate Democrat who voted against Obamacare in 2010.
Jones is an admitted former leader of the American Nazi Party, a Vietnam veteran, and a retired insurance agent. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, he has tried to run for Congress many times before, without success.
Most recently, the Illinois Republican Party ensured that he was removed from the ballot in 2016 by arranging a legal challenge that found all of his ballot signatures to be invalid. A similar attempt this year has failed, however.
The Republican Party publicly opposes Jones’s candidacy: “The Illinois Republican Party and our country have no place for Nazis like Arthur Jones. We strongly oppose his racist views and his candidacy for any public office, including the 3rd Congressional District,” said party chair Tim Schneider in a statement to the Sun-Times.
However, there is nothing the GOP can do to remove him. No other Republican stepped forward to run against the incumbent Democrat in what is presumed to be a safe liberal seat in a tough midterm environment for the GOP.
Jones’s website (to which Breitbart News will not link) includes a section devoted to questioning the Holocaust. He claims to have supported Donald Trump in 2016, but the UK Guardian quoted him in April 2017 telling a neo-Nazi rally in Kentucky that he regretted his vote for Trump: “I’m sorry I voted for the son of a bitch, I really am.”
The phenomenon of marginal, extremist candidates running for Congress is not, of course, limited to Republicans. In Massachusetts, Tahirah Amatul-Wadud, who has alleged connections to radical Muslim groups, is running in the 1st congressional district as a Democrat.
In 1996, Democrats in Alaska managed to nominate alleged antisemite Theresa Obermeyer, who believed there was a conspiracy to prevent her husband from passing the state bar exam. She finished third behind Republican incumbent Ted Stevens and Green Party candidate Jed Whittaker.
Rep. Lipinski also faces a Democratic primary challenge from small businesswoman Marie Newman.