Will County Republican Chairman George Pearson ripped into the Republican primary candidacy of a known Nazi sympathizer and racist who is bidding again to take on long-time Illinois Congressman Dan Lipinski (D-3rd District) in the general election next November.
“Once again, ignorance has reared its ugly head,” Pearson said in a statement. “It is unconscionable that any well-informed voter would have signed the petition of a known Nazi.”
With no opposition, Holocaust denier Arthur Jones was a source of national embarrassment to the Republican Party when he won the Republican primary in the 3rd Congressional District two years ago. Lipinski trounced him in the General Elections. Jones had run for the nomination seven times before.
Pearson said that he would investigate who signed Jones’ petition to determine if they were aware of the candidate’s views. Monday was the deadline for filing nominating petitions.
“Perhaps we as a party must look at our failure to educate the public about this stain on society,” Pearson said. “Most of us figured this racist would pop-up again, but no one saw him out collecting signatures.”
In the same statement, Pearson endorsed Will County board member and furniture salesman Mike Fricilone of Homer Glen, who announced his candidacy for the Lipinski seat in June.
At the time, Fricilone told the Chicago Sun-Times that he was motivated in part to run to block Jones.
“It was a factor,” Fricilone told the Sun-Time. “I mean, I thought we needed, number one, a credible, qualified candidate to run so that people actually had a real choice.”
Fricilone describes himself as a conservative, pro-life and pro-worker.
Right-of-center Lipinski is one of the few remaining pro-life Democrats in Congress. Two years ago, he faced stiff competition in the primary from the left from Marie Newman (LaGrange). She is running again this time.
“Make no mistake about it, this is a fight for freedom and liberty, a battle to stamp out racism, a struggle to restore sanity that the Democrats will rail against as they attempt to out ‘left’ one another in their primary,” Pearson said.
The primary day is March 17.
The 3rd Congressional District includes parts of 11 Southwest Side Chicago wards and portions of the western suburbs.