In a race that garnered national attention, more than 53,000 people on Chicago’s Southwest Side and in the southwest suburbs voted on Tuesday for Art Jones, a Holocaust-denier, in his losing bid in the 3rd congressional district race.
Incumbent Rep. Dan Lipinski, a Democrat, won handily — garnering more than 73 percent of the vote with 95 percent of the precincts reporting.
Reached at home Tuesday night, Jones, a Republican, said he was “gratified” so many people voted for him.
“They can’t say they didn’t know who they were voting for,” Jones said. “You guys in the media made sure of that.”
Jones said he believes the recent mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue also hurt his vote totals.
“I think I probably would’ve done a lot better had it not been for this disaster in Pittsburgh with the murder of 11 Jews,” Jones added.
Jones’ nomination embarrassed the state Republican party. At least two other Republican challengers mounted write-in campaigns to try to siphon votes away from Jones.
“It just shows how significant it is that people vote the party and don’t pay attention to the views of the candidates a lot of the time,” Lipinski said of Jones’ vote totals.
A video posted to YouTube Tuesday appeared to show Jones being confronted as he cast his ballot.
Though he had previously denied the Holocaust ever happening, Jones was captured on video saying that the 6 million Jews who were killed by the Nazis were “a bunch of stinkin’, rotten communists.”
In the 4th congressional district race, Cook County Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia scored an easy victory Tuesday. He will fill the vacated seat of his political ally, Rep. Luis Gutierrez.
Garcia — a Democrat and former alderman, state senator and mayoral candidate — received more than 86 percent of the vote, with 93 percent of precincts reporting. His Republican opponent, Mark Wayne Lorch received about 14 percent of the vote.
Garcia’s win comes 11 months after Gutierrez announced his retirement. Gutierrez endorsed Garcia to succeed him and represent the 4th District, which covers heavily Hispanic portions of the Northwest and Southwest sides, as well as the western suburbs.
Reps. Bobby Rush, Robin Kelly, Danny Davis, Mike Quigley and Jan Schakowsky, all Democrats representing parts of the city and nearby suburbs, were also re-elected.