By Bob Uphues
Democrats cruised to easy victories over their Republican opponents in the three U.S. Congressional Districts within the Riverside-Brookfield Landmark's coverage area on Nov. 6.
Daniel Lipinski, a six-term incumbent Democrat whose 3rd District includes the south half of Brookfield and the very southern tip of Riverside, handily defeated Republican Arthur Jones, a Lyons resident whose neo-Nazi past and white supremacist views won national attention and repudiation by an Illinois GOP that had failed to slate anyone against him in the primaries.
Unofficially, with all 500 precincts in Cook, DuPage and Will counties reporting, Lipinski won with 73.5 percent of the vote to Jones' 26.5 percent.
While that's a significant margin of victory for Lipinski, some 56,350 people voted for Jones, a candidate whose campaign website calls the Holocaust a "racket," promotes a conspiracy theory about a Latino takeover of the southwest United States and renaming it "Aztlan" and shows photos of him speaking at the 2014 World Congress of the neo-Nazi group Aryan Nations.
A little less than 29 percent of 3rd District voters in suburban Cook County cast their votes for Jones. But in DuPage and Will counties, Jones fared far better.
In the two DuPage County precincts within the 3rd Congressional District, Jones garnered 34.7 percent of the total. Meanwhile, in Will County's 43 precincts in the 3rd District, Jones won 38.1 percent of the vote. In addition, Jones won four Will County precincts outright. His best showing was in Homer Township Precinct 17, where Jones got 51.3 percent of the vote.
The totals so far do not reflect votes cast for a pair of write-in candidates, who joined the fray this summer in the wake of Jones' primary win.
One of the two write-in, 35-year-old LaGrange resident Justin Hanson, spent the last week of the campaign placing signs stating, "Yes, Art Jones is a Nazi" next to Jones' campaign signs throughout the district as a way to get word out about the GOP nominee's past.
The other write-in candidate in the 3rd District race is Oak Lawn dentist Dr. Kenneth Yerkes.
Garcia breezes in 4th District
Meanwhile, in the 4th Congressional District, which includes all but the western end of North Riverside, all but the southern tip of Riverside and virtually all of Brookfield north of Southview Avenue, Jesus "Chuy" Garcia was an easy winner over Riverside resident Mark Lorch.
With all 445 precincts reporting, Garcia unofficially had garnered 86.5 percent of the vote in the district, which includes large areas of Chicago's northwest and southwest sides, which have large Latino populations.
Lorch, who did not run an aggressive campaign, managed to garner 13.5 percent of the vote in the 4th District
Garcia will be a freshman congressman when he is sworn in. he replaces longtime U.S. Rep. Luis Gutierrez, who announced his retirement from Congress last year after serving as the district's representative in the U.S. House since 1993.
There had been some speculation that Gutierrez had his sights on running for mayor of Chicago, but he stated publicly in September that he would not throw his hat in the ring. Gutierrez at that time suggested Garcia might run for mayor, but Garcia has since ruled out such a run.
Davis wins 11th term in 7th District
In the 7th Congressional District, which includes North Riverside west of 13th Avenue and roughly one block of far northwestern Brookfield, incumbent Democrat Danny Davis won his 11th term in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Davis, a former Chicago alderman and Cook County commissioner, outdistanced Republican Craig Cameron in a landslide. Unofficially, with all 472 precincts reporting, Davis had won 87.7 percent of the vote to Cameron's 12.3 percent.