The institution’s Primaries Project did its own analysis of the voter tallies from the March 20 primary in the Illinois 3rd Congressional District (Chicago’s Southwest Side and surrounding suburbs).
THAT’S THE ONE where the socially-conservative Lipinski managed to fend off a challenge by Marie Newman, a political newby who tried campaigning on the notion that Lipinski’s political leanings don’t fit in with modern-day Democrats.
Not that it worked. The city portions of the district that remember back to the days when Lipinski’s father, Bill, was their Congressman (and their alderman at City Hall before that) gave Dan a large-enough support to overcome the small lead Newman had in the suburban parts.
That has many people thinking Lipinski’s victory was evidence of the Chicago “Machine” of old being able to turn out the vote for a candidate.
But Brookings researchers found that amongst people in the congressional district who voted in the 2016 presidential cycle for Donald Trump, those people were solidly in favor of keeping Lipinski.
OR MORE LIKELY, making sure that somebody like Newman never got anywhere near Capitol Hill.
Most people in the Illinois 3rd voted for Hillary Clinton to be president, as did all of Cook County and the Chicago metro area.
But amongst those who went along with Trump’s “Make America Great Again” rhetoric, one in every five voted for Lipinski this time around. That compares to only one in 20 of Trump backers who sided with Newman.
Brookings types wouldn’t say definitively why that sentiment occurred, although they did point out that many would-be Republicans cast Democratic Party ballots in the March primary because the GOP only offered the white supremacist Art Jones as their choice for the seat.
EVEN THOUGH THE Republican election cycle last month included a feisty fight by Jeanne Ives to try to knock Gov. Bruce Rauner out of the running for the Nov. 6 general election, Ives wasn’t enough to keep 3rd District GOPers with the party’s ballot.
Some 61 percent of people who cast ballots said they considered the congressional choice more significant than that of governor.
“Our data demonstrates Lipinski enjoyed a great advantage among, and likely a victory because of, self-identified Trump voters,” Brookings researchers wrote.
So is the next two years of Lipinski in Congress (nobody seriously thinks Jones can beat him come November) going to see Dan as one of Trump’s few allies amongst the Illinois congressional delegation. Or will he turn on the president, at the risk of some of his political backers deciding to turn on him come 2020?