Alderwoman Joni Tibbs says it is time city and its citizens speak
letters opposing George Ryan's presidential pardon
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[December 10, 2008]
Alderwoman Joni Tibbs addressed
Lincoln City Council members at the workshop meeting on Tuesday
night, asking that the mayor, council members and citizens of
Lincoln speak out against commuting the prison sentence that was
imposed on former Gov. George Ryan.
The former governor has sought out a presidential pardon on at
least two occasions since his incarceration. However, it now appears
that seeking this final pardon from outgoing President George W.
Bush rests in the hands of Sen. Richard "Dick" Durbin of Illinois.
The senator has said in various news releases that he is considering
the pardon but has not yet reached a decision.
Tibbs says that she
has heard many comments about this from her constituents, and she
feels confident that other aldermen have as well. She says that the
people of Lincoln are up in arms over this, and she agrees that
something needs to be done.
Tibbs says she sought out advice and has been urged to write
letters directly to Durbin.
She says that her source has told her that the senator does read
written, signed letters. He prefers mail over e-mail and does take
into consideration what he reads.
Tibbs therefore has asked that there be a letter written to
Durbin from the city of Lincoln. She wants the letter to be written
by the mayor and signed not only by Mayor Beth Davis-Kavelman, but
also by each one of the aldermen.
In addition, she wants to encourage every citizen in Lincoln to
do the same.
She says that these letters should not be general letters signed
by groups of people, but heartfelt letters from individuals,
defining their feelings about the pardon as well as the actions of
the Ryan administration that had an effect on them and our city.
Referring to the closing of the Lincoln Developmental Center and
the subsequent loss of jobs, Tibbs said, "Our city was really hurt
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Speaking about the families who were directly affected by the
closing, she added, "None of us will ever know the hurt that they
had in their own personal lives." She says that LDC employees not
only lost their jobs, many lost their homes, and some even had to
Tibbs also said that numbers are important and that the more
letters the senator receives, the better it will be.
The writing of the letter from the mayor has been placed on the
agenda for next week's regular council meeting.
In the meantime, Tibbs hopes that individuals will start writing
She offered the address to follow, saying that the senator does
check his mail daily, and she believes all the letters will be read.
Address letters to:
Sen. Richard Durbin
525 S. Eighth St.
Springfield IL 62703