Republicans flex conservative muscles in 3rd District race
Updated: April 2, 2012 8:20AM
Touting conservative tenets, a manufacturing supervisor, an attorney and an insurance agent all are vying for the Republican nomination in the 3rd Congressional District.
But some Republicans are more conservative and true to their party than others, according to Richard Grabowski, a plant materials supervisor from south suburban Hometown.
Grabowski, who has been endorsed by Tea Party organizations in Homer-Lockport and Lemont, as well as the Worth Township Republicans, released the voting record of opponent Jim Falvey, an attorney and entrepreneur from Western Springs.
Falvey has voted in six Democratic primaries and only two Republican ones since 1996, Grabowski said.
“This voting information exposes my opponent as a fraud, a Democrat in Republican’s clothing,” he said.
Falvey said the charges makes Grabowski look desperate and have had only minor impact on his campaign with questions raised he easily can answer.
“I am a life-long Republican. I have voted Republican in every general election, worked on Capital Hill for a Republican and volunteered for Republican candidates throughout the years,” Falvey said.
Voting in Democratic primaries can serve as a disruption when casting a ballot for the weakest contender, giving the Republican candidate the best chance to prevail, he said.
Falvey said he decided to seek the Republican nomination because of his interest in politics and public service since 1976.
“This year in particular with so many issues facing the country from the economy, to jobs, to the budget and a regulatory state so out of control, I felt I could make a difference and help out,” he said. “A number of people in the Republican Party encouraged me to get into the race.”
Both Grabowski and Falvey consider themselves as constitutional conservatives and question the standing of the third candidate, Arthur Jones, 64, of Lyons, whom the state Republicans have shunned as an avowed neo-Nazi. Chairman Patrick Brady issued a stinging statement disassociating Jones’ candidacy from the party.
“Patrick Brady called me a pathetic human being, but how many books has he read on the Holocaust,” Jones said. “That’s just an excuse he’s using because he doesn’t want to deal with the real issues, the criminal waste of lives and money in the war in Afghanistan.”
Jones said he’s running because Democratic incumbent Daniel Lipinski from Western Springs is a “war monger” intent on escalating the conflict with Iran over their oil sales to China.
Other compelling issues for Jones are Israel’s undue influence over America, erosion of the Bill of Rights to anti-terrorist efforts, the right to carry concealed weapons and a ban on gay marriage. Jones was defeated in the 2008 Republican primary by Michael Hawkins.
In 2010, Grabowski ran unsuccessfully against Democrat Kelly Burke for the 36th District of the Illinois House, but found the experience encouraging, capturing about 30 percent of the vote.
Grabowski said he supports efforts to create jobs and help business by lowering taxes and easing regulations. Securing funding for projects in the district as Lipinski has done just increases debt, he said.
“We can’t keep taking money to pay down bills and then bring it back for more construction projects,” Grabowski said. “This isn’t a kingdom, it’s our country.
“I think there’s a very good chance of actually taking the 3rd District back for the ordinary citizens who are no longer living under the fear of machine rule,” he said. “I would be an honest voice, an outstanding advocate for ordinary citizens and taxpayers in Washington, D.C.”
Falvey also said he also favors less government in keeping with the spirit of the Reagan revolution of the 1980s, job creation, an overhaul of the tax code and budget cuts.
In addition, Falvey said he is best qualified for the position with experience as a Congressional aide in Washington and has negotiating skills as a lawyer and in starting several businesses.
“Congress can’t just sit there and argue. The American people are tired of all the bickering over little political points. We need to move forward,” he said. “Yes, I would be willing to reach across the aisle.
“I believe I have the negotiating skills that would serve me well to uphold principals that are important, but still be able to get things done so everyone is satisfied with the result,” he said. “That’s the goal.”