By Pamela Rensing
MASCOUTAH — Local attorney Kevin Dawson has announced his candidacy for District 114 of the Illinois House of Representatives.
Dawson, 42, is the managing partner of Binsbacher, Dawson & Henke, LLC in Mascoutah. He has been licensed to practice law in Illinois and Missouri since 2005.
He was born and raised in Mascoutah. He and his wife Christina have two children, Ceretta and Dutch, who both attend schools in Mascoutah.
He graduated in 1998 from Mascoutah High School, graduated in 2002 from McKendree College and graduated in 2004 from Southern Illinois University Law School in 2004.
From 2016 to present, Dawson has served on the St. Clair County Council for the district, including Mascoutah and area.
“I first ran for county council to be a positive part of the government process and to be a voice for the people I represent,” Dawson said. “I want to continue in Illinois’ main legislative body, do what I did on county council: bring a much-needed common-sense conservative approach to legislation, help people and solve problems, in order to to make substantial changes to the state of Illinois.
“I’m running for government because, quite simply, the current system isn’t working for us. As a taxpayer and small business owner, I know firsthand the hardships the government imposes on citizens. of Illinois,” Dawson said.
“The government is not working for us fiscally. I believe that perpetual tax increases are regressive and ultimately stifle personal and professional progress. We see it now with the mass exodus of residents leaving the state of Illinois to escape these burdens. When people leave, the tax base suffers. When the tax base suffers, schools suffer. When schools suffer, crime increases, leading to a further reduction in the tax base as people move to find safer housing. It’s a cycle that must be broken before it’s too late.
“The government is not working for us as parents. The State of Illinois wants to erode traditional family values and co-parenting of our children, allowing minors to have abortions without parental consent.
“The government is not working for our public safety. The latest crime reform bill in the state of Illinois takes the handcuffs off criminals and puts them on the police. We need more good public servants who will work to change the direction of this state. We can do better, but the time has come.
According to Dawson, this isn’t a new problem, especially in the 114th District. “The fact is that our current representative is paid for by our tax dollars and we continually hear about phone calls from constituents being ignored by her office or offices.” The current state representative is LaToya Greenwood of East St. Louis.
“I’ve spoken with neighboring reps about this and their offices are trying to accommodate voters in our district, but they need help. They, like us, need a rep in the 114th district who will address these concerns.
“A civil servant must be accessible to the people for whom he is elected. The answer may not be the answer the voter wants or the answer may not be immediately available, but the representative cannot provide answers if they refuse to listen to questions.
The restructuring of the legislative district map along with other governmental factors has been an ongoing and disruptive issue in southern Illinois.
“We are all used to allegations of gerrymandering for the benefit of the majority party. The unfortunate result of this particular year’s legislative district map debacle is that, due to other factors and all at the same time: maps were redrawn and legal challenges ensued, creating uncertainty for voters; the date of the primary election was pushed back to June 28, creating confusion among voters; efforts were made to move or consolidate polling places throughout Illinois, creating further confusion in the voting process. All of these political gimmicks are further mystifying the electorate in this year’s election.
Dawson has shown his care and compassion for this area by volunteering at several charities and events, and by becoming a member of local organizations. They include:
-Main Street Mascoutah
-Leu Civic Center
-Mascoutah Athletic Commission
-Mascoutah Chamber of Commerce
-Mascoutah Khoury League
-Former member of the Mascoutah Volunteer Fire Department.
-Mascoutah Noon Lions
-Mascoutah Moose Cottage
-Mascoutah Improvement Association
-Sports organization of the Mascoutah team
-Evening Lions of Mascoutah
-Mascoutah School District Parent/Teacher Working Group
-Commissioner of the Mascoutah Police Commission
-Mascoutah General Manager Search Committee
-Mascoutah Senior Center Meals on Wheels Program
Dawson welcomes questions or thoughts on various topics. He can be reached at (618) 401-4924. Make your voice heard on Election Day on June 28.