For two decades, the 3rd Congressional District has drawn little, or weak, Republican opposition to the pair of Lipinskis, Bill and Dan, who have served as the Democratic representatives for the district since 1993.
In the March 20 primary, voters pulling Republican ballots will choose one of three men to face off against Dan Lipinski, who seeks his fifth term in office.
The contenders include a self-described "constitutional conservative Republican" and "ordinary citizen" Richard Grabowski of southwest suburban Hometown; a man whom Grabowski considers a Democratic plant - Western Springs resident James Falvey, who says he is a lifelong Republican with views similar, though a bit more moderate, than Grabowski's; and perennial candidate Art Jones, a Lyons resident whom the GOP establishment has shunned for his past ties to neo-Nazi organizations and consistently anti-Semitic views.
Grabowski made his accusation against Falvey on Feb. 22 in a press release attacking Falvey's record of pulling a Democratic ballot in six of the last nine primaries in the 3rd District, the fact that he several blocks from Lipinski in Western Springs and filed his nominating petitions on the final day to do so.
"If Falvey is not a Democrat plant on my ballot, then he's a sad case for a crossover," said Grabowski in the release.
In his endorsement interview with the Landmark on Feb. 17, Grabowski said Falvey, who is an attorney, was "aiding and abetting" the enemy by doing pro bono legal work on behalf of an inmate at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.
Falvey responded in his interview with the Landmark on Feb. 24, saying he is a lifelong Republican who worked as an intern for former GOP Sen. Fred Upton and volunteered to work on the campaigns for Jim Oberweis, Lamar Alexander and George H.W. Bush.
"This is hardly a Democratic record," said Falvey, who explained that he pulled Democratic primary ballots because of the either non-existent or weak candidates fielded by the GOP in the 3rd District. He said he never voted for Dan Lipinski but for the democratic candidate he felt "would give the Republican candidates the best chance of winning."
Both Falvey and Grabowski share similar views on a number of issues, including the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which Republicans have derided as Obamacare. Both would like to see the act repealed.
Grabowski: Bring on flat tax
Grabowski is a material supervisor at a west suburban manufacturing company. He ran unsuccessfully in his bid to become state representative in the 36th District in 2010.
In his endorsement interview, Grabowski advocated for a flat tax and said that the federal government should play no role in public education.
Grabowski also called for the repeal of the Dodd-Frank legislation passed by Congress in response to the financial meltdown of 2008, saying the legislation "is doing irreparable damage to the banking system."
Grabowski said he'd also limit the amount of federal money sent home to congressional districts for such things as infrastructure improvements. Lipinski, a member of the House Transportation Committee, has directed millions to the district for road, railroad and bridge improvements.
"All he's doing is building a kingdom," Grabowski said. "There's got to be a better way."
Calling himself a candidate who represents "traditional family values," Grabowski says he's "pro-life, pro-business and pro-Second Amendment." He said he believes that marriage should be confined to "one man and one woman" and that "the idea of marriage is based on procreation."
Falvey opposes bailouts
Falvey said he is also against gay marriage, although he said he favors allowing civil unions for gay couples.
As far as the tax code goes, Falvey said a flat tax would be ideal, but said more realistically it would have some degree of progressive taxation to it. A flat tax isn't 100-percent desirable, Falvey said.
"A completely flat tax is not necessarily sustainable or fair, but separating it out in three different rates, for example, is workable along with eliminating more deductions and credits," Falvey said.
Falvey said he opposed the federal government's bailout of the financial and auto industries, and said the federal government needs to consolidate departments to eliminate unnecessary duplication of services, citing the Department of Homeland security as one such agency he questions the need for.
"We created this monstrosity to try to make things simpler - so that information doesn't slip through the cracks," Falvey said. "What we did is just create another agency that has its own interests."
Creating jobs is crucial, said Falvey, adding he doesn't believe the federal government should be in the job-creation business.
"I don't believe pumping government money into the economy is a way to make things better," Falvey said. "I believe we need to get out of the way of the job creators so they can get America back to work."
Jones is no stranger as a candidate in the 3rd District. He ran and lost in 2008 in the Republican primary and previously ran for congress as a Republican on four other occasions dating back to 1984, but never made it out of the primaries.
A former member of the now-defunct National Socialist White People's Party, Jones in his endorsement interview with the Landmark on Feb. 15 said the Holocaust never happened.
He called literature about the Holocaust, such as Night by Elie Wiesel, "political pornography that the Jews require all the time now" and decried the influence Jews and the "Israeli lobby" have over U.S. government, which he dubbed "the two-party, Jew-party system."
"You have to understand the way the Jews are organized in this country," said Jones. "They are the most politically organized group in the country. They have a lot of clout."
Jones also warned that illegal immigrants were creating a Marxist state called Aztlan in the nation's southwest and that the U.S. government is complicit in the creation of the new state by ignoring illegal immigration.