On Tuesday Illinois held its respective Republican and Democratic primaries for the state’s 3rd District. Usually state level races aren’t terribly notable, but in this case the incumbent, “Blue Dog” Democrat Dan Lipinski, will be squaring off against a dyed-in-the-wool Neo-Nazi named Arthur Jones.
A perennial candidate for public office, Jones will almost assuredly lose his race in November, and only won this primary because he ran unopposed — the 3rd District is too liberal even for your typical Republican to win. However, 20,000 Illinoisans voted for him, so voters deserve a clear picture of who Arthur Jones really is.
The septuagenarian hatemonger describes himself on his official website as a Vietnam veteran with the “blood of the Southern Confederate and the Northern Yankee” coursing through his veins. The bottom of his website is decorated with the GOP symbol — the elephant — with a Confederate flag on its back, apparently without a hint of irony.
He wrote that we should “bring our troops home to defend our own country’s borders against illegal alien drug dealers, criminals, and potential terrorists.” He claimed, improbably, that sanctuary cities are a “blatant violation” of the Constitution’s Guarantee Clause. And he called the LGBT movement a “blatant assault on the Christian based foundation of this country” which “MUST BE STOPPED NOW.”
He even proposed a constitutional amendment to prevent cities from becoming less white. According to Jones, “If your neighborhood is found to be too White, too Christian, or too straight, the Federal government intends on changing that with or without the cooperation of your local elected authorities.” His “Neighborhood Amendment” would allow citizens to keep their cities 90% white and Christian.
And this kind of rhetoric is entirely typical of Jones, who has been a mainstay on the racist Right since the 1970s. He and his wife founded — and according to the Anti-Defamation League are likely the sole members of — the America First Committee, a nod to Charles Lindburgh’s pro-fascist and anti-interventionist group.
During the ’90s he could be found on the talk show circuit, frothing at the mouth over the Holocaust “racket” or calling for an end to “special rights for non-whites.” He railed against gays whom he wanted to put “back in the closet.” When Skokie, Illinois — the site of an attempted Neo-Nazi march in the ’70s — opened a Holocaust museum in 2009, Jones was there to protest.
In other words, Arthur Jones is nothing special — just a run-of-the-mill Nazi crank. In fact, even by white supremacist standards he’s a bit of a disappointment. AltRight.com’s Evan McLaren dedicated an entire article to dismissing him outright, mocking his “rudimentary-looking campaign website” before concluding:
In other words, I will probably never know how I feel about Jones’s views, because by now I am too bored to care. I am bored with Jones himself, whom I can imagine finding tolerably eccentric for a few minutes of personal interaction, but whose fossilized appearance and preoccupation with historical revision leave a lot to be desired. His brand does not represent the future, and he and his supporters might help out more by putting their resources somewhere other than into doomed political campaigns whose cultural impact is low or negative.
And for once McLaren has a bit of a point. Flotsam like Jones wouldn’t merit any attention save for the fact that he lucked his way into the Republican nomination — something that’s a bridge too far even in the age of Trump.
Nonetheless this is where we are. A man who celebrates Hitler’s birthday is a major party candidate for Congress because the Republicans were derelict in their duties and thousands of voters chose the candidate with the “R” next to his name. Come November 6th, Jones will be trounced once again, which is the second best way to deal with Illinois Nazis.
For a glimpse into the crackpot world of Arthur Jones, see the video below: