November 2, 2017
Endorsed: LaToya Cantrell (Mayor) and Cyndi Nguyen (City Council Dist. E)
Know Your Vote NOLA is pleased to release our endorsements in the New Orleans Run-Off election, ending on Nov. 18th. The primary attributes we have sought in our elected officials, both from their past actions and current statements, are (1) a fundamental understanding of the problems faced by working class people and those in poverty, (2) an intellectual curiosity to learn from those who are bearing the burden of difficult living conditions, (3) a desire to bring new ideas to the table and consider solutions from those who are directly impacted by an issue, and (4) the courage to stand up to powerful and deep-rooted special interests.
LaToya Cantrell for Mayor of New Orleans
Current Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell has demonstrated a track record of working collaboratively with people throughout the city, along with a commitment to changing our draconian criminal justice system. We support her in standing up to those who have financial and political incentives to build an even bigger prison and jail industry. We are troubled by her opponent’s ties to the bail bond industry and the current District Attorney, and recognize that the solo decisions made during a judicial career is quite different than the collaborative process of a city councilwoman.
Ms. Cantrell, having participated in hundreds of hearings where The People have been able to participate, will bring the type of ear that our next Mayor needs to listen closely to the struggles of our great city. Crime is directly related to the need for decent jobs, affordable housing, and medical care for our bodies and minds. In the wake of Katrina, billions of dollars flowed past the neediest of our city- the people who lost it all, including family members- and went to housing developers, beautiful police stations, and a shiny new jail. A decade of data should be more than enough to turn the tide against what has been done to embed so much desperation and despair.
LaToya Cantrell has been interacting with all sectors of our local government, has voted on the budgets of every agency, and heard numerous ordinances impacting many aspects of our lives. This experience is crucial to building a talented staff, and providing proper direction and oversight.
Cyndi Nguyen for City Council District E
Ms. Nguyen has been an active member of the East community over the years, and her many roles will serve her well on City Council. She has a clear recognition that the jail is a business, and New Orleans has been investing the bulk of its money on incarcerating our own people for a half century. In an era when we should be focusing on how to protect ourselves from environmental and industrial disasters, we expect her to help shift resources away from over 1000 cages (Orleans Parish Prison) and into building strong communities.
It is important to not only hold officials accountable, but to elect people with the conscience to respond. The City Council has several people of whom we expect to deliver, including Jason Williams, Helena Moreno, and Kristen Giselson Palmer, and we would like to add Ms. Nguyen. We know over the past administration, LaToya Cantrell neither ignored or ran from the demands of common people. Like any politician, she will never be able to make everyone satisfied; we do believe, however, that she will continue to center herself at the crossroads of controversy, and she will do what is in her power to reach consensus for the right decision.
Treasurer, District B, and Municipal Court Judge
Derrick Edwards is an easy choice for state Treasurer, because (1) he is the one actually qualified, (2) he is not an opponent of civil rights like his opponent has shown, and (3) he is the one actually qualified.
In District B, both Banks and Bloom have shown reasons to pause, and neither earned an endorsement. We hope that whomever wins becomes committed to massive changes to the criminal justice budget which drives our city investment.
Neither candidate for Municipal Court Judge has exhibited enough track record to distinguish themselves from the other. We wish them both the best of luck.
Know Your Vote NOLA is a project of Voters Organized to Educate, a 501(c)4 organization.