Dear editor:

I read with great interest the recent article in the Chicago Reader [Neighborhood News, February 11] concerning the March 15 election for Cook County Commissioner from the Tenth District, which covers the north lakefront area. I found very persuasive both Bill O’Donaghue’s criticism of his opponent, Maria Pappas, for her simultaneous pursuit of two elective offices (the other being the much more publicized commission presidency) and Ms. Pappas’s implication that Mr. O’Donaghue is a machine hack. I wish that they could see themselves as clearly as each sees the other.

I am writing today to correct any impression left by the article that there is no other serious candidate to whom the district’s voters can turn. Nothing could be further from the truth. James Patton, a longtime employee of the Chicago Board of Education, is in the race and, most assuredly, in it to win. I am forced to conclude that your reporter, whom I have known to be an impartial man, has fallen victim to self-serving claims by the other candidates about the likely outcome of the election. I am very surprised that he did not contact anyone from the Patton campaign before preparing the article.

A quick call to our office would have revealed that, by all objective measures, Mr. Patton’s campaign is as “serious” as–if not more serious than–those of his opponents. He has had a full-time campaign manager since October. He opened his campaign office on January 1; to my knowledge, neither of the other candidates even yet has done so. His campaign has raised a substantial amount of money, all of it in small contributions and nearly all of it from district voters. Mr. Patton has more volunteer campaign workers than the other candidates. In early March he will begin an extensive radio campaign and, prior to the election, will have reached all of the district’s voters by mail. Neither of the other candidates has established the visibility in the Tenth District that Mr. Patton has.

Finally, your article said that Mr. Patton rarely attends local endorsement sessions. He has, in fact, attended every such session to which he has been invited and has made well over 50 campaign appearances.

In order to present your readers with a complete and accurate account of the upcoming election, the Chicago Reader should supplement its recent article with a profile of Mr. Patton and an examination of his campaign. I invite you to call me at his campaign office for an interview about Mr. Patton’s dynamic ideas for Cook County.

Brendan T. Clancy

Campaign Coordinator

Patton for Commissioner Campaign