WASHINGTON — The Republican National Committee denounced on Tuesday an outspoken Holocaust denier and unambiguous anti-Semite, Arthur Jones, who is poised to become the GOP nominee for a US House seat in Illinois.
“We condemn this candidate and his hateful rhetoric in the strongest possible terms,” RNC spokesman Michael Ahrens told The Times of Israel in an email.
Over the weekend, it was revealed that Jones is set to secure his party’s nomination for Illinois’ 3rd Congressional District because no other GOP candidate has entered the race. Since the 1990s, Jones has routinely sought that seat, which represents parts of Chicago and its southwestern suburbs.
The 70-year-old retired insurance salesman, however, is not your typical US House of Representatives hopeful. He is a vehement Holocaust denier and former chair of the American Nazi Party; he has referred to the Jewish state as “racist criminal Zionist Israel”; and he is known to orchestrate an annual “family friendly” dinner commemorating Adolf Hitler’s birthday.
“I’m running for Congress, not the chancellor of Germany. All right. To me, the Holocaust is what I said it is: it’s an international extortion racket,” he told the Chicago Sun-Times in an interview published Sunday.
Ahrens did not respond to a followup email asking what the national party urges Republican voters in that district to do if no other GOP candidate emerges.
The Illinois Republican Party, for its part, has also spoken out against Jones. Its chairman Tim Schneider told the Sun-Times his party and “our country have no place for Nazis like Arthur Jones. We strongly oppose his racist views and his candidacy for any public office, including the 3rd Congressional District.”
Jones now heads the America First Committee, an homage to the Nazi sympathizer and white supremacist Charles Lindbergh, a spokesman for the original America First Committee, which advocated against US entry into World War II.
He recently told the Sun-Times of his reincarnation of Lindbergh’s group and that “membership in this organization is open to any white American citizen of European, non-Jewish descent.”
And though Lindbergh’s America First message has been echoed by US President Donald Trump, Jones said in a recent video, filmed at a neo-Nazi retreat in Kentucky, that he had little use for the former real estate mogul, who “surrounded himself with hordes of Jews including a Jew in his own family, that punk named Jared Kushner.”
“I’m sorry I voted for the son of a bitch, pardon my English,” Jones said at the rally. “He’s nothing but a puppet … this Jew-loving fool.”
Trump and the White House have not yet made any public statement on Jones’ candidacy.