Feb. 6 – New Orleans Mayoral Primary
A race that has largely been flying under the radar but has huge potential significance is the election of a new mayor in New Orleans. Ray Nagin, famous as the mayor during Hurricane Katrina, is term-limited, and so for the first time since 2002, there will be a new leader of the largest city in Louisiana.
As is typical in elections in the Big Easy, there are a wide cast of characters for voters to choose from, many with deep ties to the political order of the city and some with fresh faces. To learn about voting in the mayoral election, click here.
To request an absentee ballot, click here.
As always, the important question is who to vote for. Voters have 9 to choose from. The top two recipients of votes, regardless of party affiliation, will go to a general election on March 6, 2010.
Mitch Landrieu is not only known for being Lieutenant Governor of Louisiana and his second-place finish to Mayor Nagin in the mayoral race in 2006. He comes from the premier political dynasty in Louisiana. His father was the last white mayor of New Orleans, from 1970 to 1978 and his sister, Mary Landrieu, is a US Senator. A long-time crusader for civil rights and therefore already praised by many African-American leaders in the city, he is hoping the third time is the charm to become Mayor of New Orleans after an additional loss in 1994. To learn more, click here.
The only female candidate in this race is Nadine Ramsey, who resigned in October from her position as Civil District Court Judge, an elected position in New Orleans, to run for Mayor. Also an Louisiana Assistant Attorney General and City Attorney for NOLA Ramsey worked for the Louisiana Health Care Authority before becoming a judge. To learn more, click here.
Outside of the political establishment, a few candidates have been making waves in the race. One is James Perry, a non-profit executive who has successfully worked on issues of neighborhood beautification and fair housing in New Orleans for a long time. He is currently the executive director of the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center. Perry has also stirred up a lot of notice with a, shall we say, unusual political ad. To learn more, click here.
Troy Henry has also hit the airwaves hard and has raised his profile to top-tier status. A businessman who, like most of the candidates, was born and raised in the city, Henry highlights his ability to bring his board-room experience to city management. On top of serving as President of the largest waste-water management country in the US, he has been central in many post-Katrina rebuilding efforts. To learn more, click here.
Voters may recognize John Georges, a former member of the state Board of Regents who ran for governor as an independent in 2007 and garnered almost 200,000 statewide votes. Now running for mayor as a self-proclaimed Democrat, Georges, who also has a business background and currently serves as a commissioner of the New Orleans Public Belt Rail Road, was recently endorsed by Forum for Equality, a statewide civil rights organization. To learn more, click here.
In this heavily Democratic city, there is one Republican running for mayor. Rob Couhig is an antitrust lawyer and businessman, combining his law practice with consulting with businesses on starting in New Orleans and the surrounding areas. To learn more, click here.
Also running are Jonah Bascle, Thomas Lambert and Manny Bruno