Alan Augustson, Green Party candidate in the special election to fill Rahm’s Congressional seat (IL-5), announced this morning that he was dropping out of the race. Likely his name remains on the Green Party primary ballot nonetheless, along with Matt Reichel, Deb Gordils, Mark Frederickson, and Simon Ribeiro.
Green Candidate Alan Augustson today announced that he is “standing down” from his bid to replace Rahm Emanuel (D-05) in the House of Representatives, after his wife was hospitalized Wednesday evening.
“Kimberly is experiencing severe abdominal pain and was admitted to Swedish Covenant (Hospital) early last night” said Augustson, 44, an economist and management consultant. “We don’t know the nature of the illness yet but it’s fairly certain I’ll be keeping an eye on her for at least a few days.
“The Special Election process is very brief, and a campaign has to be extremely intense in order to be effective, and I cannot commit to that level of intensity right this instant. Her illness, and the ongoing effects of my own, make me less than the best campaigner I can be, and the Green Party needs fighters who have both hands free to swing. Campaign money, and media attention for the Greens is so scarce, that it needs to be concentrated on the most viable candidates.”
Augustson revealed for the first time that he himself suffers the ongoing effects of Asperger’s Syndrome, an autism spectrum disorder that leaves its victims with full intellectual faculties, but impedes their social development and interactive skills.
“I can be combative, and even inappropriate, at times,” Augustson elaborated. “I have an appalling lack of empathy. I can be single-minded to the point of pathology, on a topic or issue that I regard as important. To all outward appearances I’m simply a jerk, but the outward expression really has nothing to do with inward intention.”
Augustson stated that his immediate plans are “to see to Kimberly’s health and comfort,” but that he remains committed to the Green Party and will “wholeheartedly support the winner of the March 3rd primary.”
Other Green Party contenders in the Primary include Matt Reichel, a former Dennis Kucinich campaign staffer, and Deb Gordils, who has contended in the past for Alderman. “I look forward to seeing what the Greens can accomplish in this very vital campaign,” Augustson said, “and the winner may count on me for sound policy advice”.