To the Editor:

I would like to thank the 236 courageous and progressive voters who showed up to support my efforts to focus this election on reduced property taxes and increased public safety. In order to overcome the 3,000 or so "extra votes" likely to be used against an independent candidate, we must mobilize our neighbors, friends and colleagues throughout the City of East St. Louis to show up and show out on April 5, 2011.

When Obama ran in 2008, more than 13,000 voters showed up and in the 2011 primary only 5,640. It seems that there are 7,000 or so 2008 Obama voters who did not show up on Feb. 22. If we want the same type of change locally, I believe we have to show up similarly in 2011.

Please take a moment to revisit the thinking and actions you took in 2008 to make sure that Obama was elected President. Now, apply this same effort or more to making sure we get a similar turnout on April 5. In this way, we are still in control of who gets elected in East St. Louis despite the possible cheating or the "extra" 3,000 votes.

History has shown that when 10,000 or more voters turnout, the probability of progressive change is very high.

For the record, I am back on the ballot for City Councilman and would appreciate your support at the polls on Tuesday, April 5, 2011 for me and my campaign to reduce property taxes and increase public safety.

Matt Hawkins, President
East St. Louis Alliance for Change

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