In spite of defeat, Hawkins plans for another referendum on ESL elections in November

By Ann Maher | Mar 21, 2012


Matt Hawkins, president of the East St. Louis Alliance for Change, said he is not giving up on an effort to dismantle the Elections Board of East St. Louis.

On Tuesday, voters in East St. Louis rejected a referendum that would have done so by a margin of 69 to 31 percent. A total of 3,359 voters said "No" to 1,503 voters who said "Yes" on the question of rejecting the city's election law.

Hawkins said his next step is to once again gather enough signatures from city voters so that the question will re-appear on the November ballot.

In the meantime, he said he will continue advocating for voter rolls in East St. Louis be purged of inactive and deceased voters.

He has petitioned the 20th Judicial Circuit to uphold election code that requires voter rolls to be accurate.

Hawkins claims that the city's election board is well aware of voters who are not eligible to vote in the city.

"There are people I know who moved to Belleville 15-20 years ago and they are still registered (in East St. Louis," Hawkins said.

He said there are instances where people have filed affidavits with the Board to have their names removed, to no avail.

"They've (the Board) have been ordered by the Democratic Party Chairman not to remove them," Hawkins said.

"Extra voters allows fraud in an undetectable way," he said. "It creates an environment for vote fraud."

Hawkins said a hearing will be held April 30 on his petition that seeks, among other things, to clean up the city's voter rolls.

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