Republicans from local groups to the Illinois governor and even a U.S. senator all told voters in the 3rd Congressional District not to vote for Arthur Jones, a Holocaust-denier and former member of the American Nazi Party.
However, Jones won the Republican nomination because no one else ran.
His previous run for U.S. Senate in 2016 was foiled when the state party challenged his petition signatures and got his name knocked off the ballot. They were unsuccessful this year.
Even a couple of write-in candidates decided to run and take some votes away from him, or at least raise awareness about his anti-Semitic views.
While Jones lost to incumbent Dan Lipinski, D-Western Springs, by about a 2-to-1 margin, he still managed to earn more than 50,000 votes. In Will County alone, Jones received 11,576 votes.
He even won four precincts locally, including one in Lockport Township and three in Homer Township. The precinct he got the most votes in actually was one he lost. He got 518 votes in Homer Township’s 14th precinct, although Lipinski got the lion’s share at 698.
Local Republican groups condemned Jones’ candidacy and even demanded he drop out of the race. Will County Young Republicans President Cornel Darden said his organization tried to spread the word, but ultimately, some people just vote straight down the party line.
“I’m all but certain about 25 percent of people go to the polls and they’re voting straight Democrat ... or Republican,” Darden said. “They’re just looking for the little ‘R.’ ”