Lawmakers keep their eyes on the ball _lowres

Senator Karen Carter Peterson

Is a new challenger about to enter the New Orleans mayoral race?

According to a report from Gambit, Karen Carter Peterson, D-New Orleans, might be.

The state senator and vice chair of the Democratic National Party is "doing all the due diligence that a serious potential candidate has to do" before entering the race, but is not ready to give a definitive answer. 

That due diligence includes tasks such as polling, strategy, talking to potential campaign team members assessing the strengths of herself and her opponents and meeting with at least one other candidate -- LaToya Cantrell.

"Because we truly are dear friends, I had to meet with LaToyaand let her know that I was seriously considering the race," Peterson said to Gambit. 

Peterson promises to make her intentions clear before qualifying opens July 12, according to the report.

Peterson says she's been encouraged by friends to enter the race based on the current field which, along with Cantrell, includes former judge Michael Bagneris, former municipal court judge Desiree Charbonnet and businessman Frank Scurlock. 

Peterson was last in the news during the legislative session when House Republicans accused her of verbally assaulting state Rep. Dodie Horton, R-Haughton, during the final chaotic moments of the regular session. 

Read Gambit's full report here.