First of all the W. Pa. Black Political Assembly asks that Black voters do as they have always done; consider our community’s needs, carefully weigh our choices and cast an informed vote. For too long our community has been ignored or taken for granted. As the largest ethnic group in the city and the largest constituency within the Democratic Party it is long past due that candidates for office pay proper attention to and reward our community according to its importance and its needs. We must note that the Hill District ministers had a candidates’ forum and asked those running for mayor and city council to submit written answers to some questions of concern to our community. Only Bill Peduto and Dan Lavelle bothered to answer. What do you make of that?

So you have choices, go for the candidate who seems to better place human needs before other factors, go for the candidate who has the most money? Go for the candidate who should be most sympathetic to our needs because he is one of us? Can each of them govern effectively if they were to triumph and sit as mayor? Do we go for the one we judge will win?

Make your choice carefully! And by the way, don’t tell anyone but the next election for mayor will be May 16, 2017. With this secret information we can get a head start on everyone else for the next time around.

Rev. Thomas Smith
Western Pennsylvania Black ­Political Assembly

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