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Springfield Ward 5: Purchase vs Cahnman vs Pitts

Incumbent Ward 5 Alderwoman Lakeisha Purchase is defending the seat she was appointed to when Andrew Proctor resigned.She is running against former alderman, county board member, and perennial candidate Sam Cahnman, and write-in candidate Calvin Pitts, owner of a construction and investment company and president of not-for-profit Southtown Construction Training Center, which helps young adults train and enter the building trades

Purchase was formerly an elected trustee of the Capital Township Board. She works for the Illinois Department of Transportation and is the owner of a residential real estate development and management company. She is single. Cahnman, an attorney and member of the Sangamon County Board, is married and father of a one-year-old. Pitts, who was removed from the ballot for not having enough valid voter signatures on his petitions, is running as a write-in and and is a widower and father of four grown children.

Cahnman has a list of over ninety traffic violations that show up in a cursory search of Sangamon County court records. He was also arrested for solicitation of two undercover police officers in 2009 but was found not guilty in a jury trial. In 2014 he was censured by the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission for improperly obtaining a copy of a judges calendar, and was suspended from practicing law for ninety days in 2016 for a conflict of interest issue involving a client and the Springfield Police Department while he was also serving as Ward 5 Alderman. Purchase had a handful of minor traffic violations pop up over the last ten years, mostly expired license registration. Pitts has charges of operating a watercraft under the influence in 2012 and DUI in 2020 against him listed in court records.

Springfield and Central Illinois Trades and Labor Council, Teamsters Local 916, AFSCME, Fire Fighters Local #37, Police Officers PBPA Unit #5, and Congresswoman Nikki Budzinski have all endorsed Purchase. She is running on a platform of economic vitality, improved public safety, and quality neighborhoods.

Cahnman didn’t show any endorsements anywhere we could find, and he is running on a platform of cracking down on vacant property owners and related code violations, limit campaign contributions to city candidates.

Pitts is running to improve government transparency, traffic cams to address speeding and fly dumping. He also wants to improve broadband internet access and increase employment opportunities, which is the purpose of the not-for-profit Southtown Construction Training Center which he runs.


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