Troy Henry backs Cantrell in runoff

Businessman Troy Henry, the fourth-place finisher in the New Orleans mayoral primary, swung his support behind runoff candidate LaToya Cantrell on Tuesday.

Cantrell and her Nov. 18 opponent, Desiree Charbonnet, are competing for the votes that went to Henry and other sidelined candidates.

Cantrell had already gained the support of Michael Bagneris, the third-place finisher.

“I trust LaToya. She has delivered for our city, and I know she can do that as mayor,” Henry said.

“She realizes that we must take a big-picture approach to solving our crime and infrastructure problems, because we’ve experienced so many shortsighted failures in the past," he said. "She brings the type of leadership New Orleans needs to really bring us into the 21st century.”

Henry, who captured 6 percent of the vote on Oct. 14, was a favorite of some members of the city’s business community, who started a political action committee in his favor and may be more willing now to put their financial muscle behind Cantrell in the runoff.

Cantrell captured 39 percent of the vote in the primary to Charbonnet’s 30 percent.

Losing the Henry endorsement is another blow for Charbonnet, who has tried to undercut Cantrell's support with a barrage of attacks on Cantrell’s use of a credit card billed to taxpayers, her track record in Broadmoor neighborhood activism and other alleged missteps.

Cantrell responded to the attacks Monday by depicting trips Charbonnet took and money she spent to furnish her office as a Municipal Court judge as lavish and unnecessary.

Cantrell said she was pleased to have Henry's backing.

“Troy ran a strong, substantive campaign of ideas, particularly on fiscal management and applying private-sector best practices to government,” she said. “I am proud to have his support and look forward to working with him to make our city better.”

Bloom snags three new endorsements 

Seth Bloom, who faces Jay Banks in the Nov. 18 runoff for the New Orleans City Council’s District B seat, has gained endorsements from three former opponents, his campaign said Tuesday.

Eugene Ben-Oluwole, Catherine Love and Andre Strumer — three candidates knocked out of the race in the Oct. 14 primary — gave Bloom their support this week. Timothy David Ray, the third-place finisher in the District B race, has not announced an endorsement.

"Through this campaign, I have gotten to know and respect these individuals very much,” Bloom said of those endorsing him. “They are all deeply committed to improving our city, and having earned their trust and support means a lot to me.”

In the primary, Bloom captured 40 percent of the vote to Banks’ 27 percent.

Bloom led Banks in fundraising, but Banks had the backing of much of the local political establishment. In an unusual move, Gov. John Bel Edwards also threw his support behind Banks.

Bloom has received the support of the Alliance for Good Government, the Coalition for Better Government, the Homebuilders Association of Greater New Orleans and other civic groups.

Bloom is a criminal defense attorney and former Orleans Parish School Board member, while Banks is a Dryades YMCA administrator and former King Zulu. He is a longtime member of the Central City-based political organization BOLD that once dominated District B politics. 

Cantrell claims $190K fundraising haul

LaToya Cantrell saw a fundraising boost after her first-place finish in the Oct. 14 mayoral primary, collecting $190,000 in the first week after the election, her campaign said.

The campaign said the donations came from about 140 donors, which would average out to about $1,360 per person.

Throughout the primary race, Desiree Charbonnet dominated in fundraising, bringing in $1.3 million over the course of the campaign. That was about twice what Cantrell raised during that time.

Full campaign finance reports from both candidates are due to be released next week.

Compiled by Jessica Williams and Jeff Adelson 

Follow Jessica Williams on Twitter, @jwilliamsNOLA​.