Cantrell recall organizers, election officials square off over voter lists in court hearing

Belden Batiste, co-organizer of an effort to recall New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell, arrives...
Belden Batiste, co-organizer of an effort to recall New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell, arrives at City Hall on Wednesday (Feb. 22) to deliver the petition which he says has enough signatures to trigger a special election.(WVUE-Fox 8)
Published: Feb. 27, 2023 at 12:06 PM CST
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Organizers of the recall petition of New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell are in court Monday (Feb. 27) asking for an accurate count of the active voters in Orleans Parish.

The NoLaToya organizers are arguing that the Orleans Parish Registrar of Voters has fallen short on the job, saying the active voter list is off by more than 30,000 names.


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The campaign filed a lawsuit earlier this month against Registrar Sandra Wilson and Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin saying they have not adequately performed their duties.

Representatives for Ardoin’s office argued that he had a very limited role in the process of providing the report of qualified voters. They say if he should face any litigation, it should be in East Baton Rouge Parish, where his duties are performed.

Representatives for the recall organizers say both Ardoin and Wilson are responsible for maintaining an accurate list of active voters in Orleans Parish. The litigation affects Orleans voters and therefore should take place there, attorneys said.

A judge ruled that Orleans Parish is a proper venue for the litigation.

“These people aren’t here. These dead people can’t sign the petition and these people who moved out of state cannot sign the petition either,” NoLaToya attorney Laura Cannizzaro Rodrigue told Fox 8. “So we should only be required to get 20% of people who are actually active voters in Orleans Parish.”

Rodrigue requested that Ardoin face questioning in person, not through a proxy. Ardoin’s office says Commissioner Sherri Hadskey is better suited to answer the court’s questions, as she is most directly connected to the maintaining of the voter lists.

Wilson was present in the courtroom Monday, though she was not specifically required to be in attendance.

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