Recall of New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell Falls Short, Official Numbers Show
NEW ORLEANS, La. (KPEL News) - Despite a $1.2 million campaign and a lot of hype, the campaign to recall New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell fell well short of its goal, the official count showed on Tuesday.
The campaign had six months to collect roughly 45,000 signatures but fell about 18,000 short, the numbers show. Recall organizers collected 27,243 valid signatures during that time period.
According to NOLA.com, the campaign can appeal, but a victory there seems extremely difficult to achieve.
Still, the campaign wasn't able to come close to the high bar of nearly 45,000 signatures needed to trigger a recall election, according to a certification submitted by Orleans Parish Registrar of Voters Sandra Wilson.
The huge shortfall means that any legal challenge from the recall organizers will be a long shot.
The final count could offer a boost for Cantrell, who’s been dogged by the well-funded, high-profile campaign for the last seven months.
Cantrell's popularity in the city she oversees has been tanking as the high-profile campaign to oust her has rolled on. The registrar's office says the campaign collected 67,000 signatures, but well over half were declared invalid.
But a mysterious, second batch of documents that recall organizers turned over to the office on the final day of a five-day addition and withdrawal period was mostly deemed invalid.
Of the 32,421 signatures submitted during the second period, recall organizers added only 24 to their overall count. According to a report from Wilson's office, 4,783 signatures were rejected as duplicates and 26,207 were rejected for "other" reasons.
Cantrell fought back against the campaign, claiming it was an attempt to disenfranchise Black voters.
But even with the defeat, activists who have found themselves disappointed in Cantrell's performance as mayor are celebrating some moral victories stemming from the effort.
Cantrell will stay on the job for the remainder of her term, but she is term-limited.