Letters to the Editor – January 24, 2008

Critical of Riley

The former Star Newspaper published an editorial on January 18, 2007 about the appointment of Al Riley as State Representative of the 38th District. How unfortunate it is to now really see the byproduct of this bad process and the deceit of political insiders.

The previously elected State Representative resigned less than two months after being elected. Three committeemen then appointed Al Riley, who was previously appointed Township Supervisor, as our State Representative. One of the committeemen happens to be his subordinate at the township and held the weighted vote. Al Riley then goes on to hire this committeemen’s daughter as his Legislative Assistant. Furthermore, a view of Al Riley’s political career reveals that he was initially appointed to every elected position held. This clearly gives him the advantage at election time, as he is then the incumbent.

Now the power of persuasion has come into play, as many elected officials including Mayors, trustees, and township officials, are writing letters of support encouraging citizens to vote for Al Riley. As the Rich Township Supervisor, he has also plastered his name on the township vans and vehicles, politicking at the taxpayer’s expense. How sad and assuming of Al Riley and his insiders to think that the citizens of the 38th District can’t recognize a snow job, smear campaign, and lack of integrity when we see it.

Philip J. Whorton
Park Forest

For Ashmore

Toni Ashmore will be a breath of fresh air in Springfield. In Toni, we will have a representative who will aptly present the entire 38th District. This has not happened in the last six years. Under our current state representative and his predecessor, a majority of state funds that are routinely awarded to municipalities were awarded mainly to one town in the District based on political favoritism and simple old-fashioned cronyism. Other towns, particularly in the northern section of the 38th District, suffered.

Toni is a proven coalition builder who has the skills and personality to work with all factions in Springfield and she will ensure that her member initiatives are fairly distributed throughout the 38th District to stem the tide of unfairness in state funding distribution that has existed since 2003.

Thomas Ketchum