District A is historically host to one of the more volatile seats on the New Orleans City Council — the last four elections have yielded four different winners — but the field of potential challengers to incumbent Councilwoman Susan Guidry is largely quiet as she completes her first term.
A Guidry campaign internal poll conducted in June may explain why. Two-thirds of likely voters in the district said they have a favorable opinion of Guidry — a tall barrier for any potential challenger to overcome.
The automated phone survey of 554 likely voters was conducted on behalf of the Win Partners consulting firm for the Guidry campaign. Internal polls should always be taken with a healthy grain of salt; still, the results of the Guidry poll would be good news for any campaign and difficult for any potential challenger to ignore. With a margin of error of 4 percent, it shows Guidry's name is recognized by 77.6 percent of residents of the district likely to vote in the 2014 elections, and that 66 percent of respondents have a favorable opinion of her. Her strongest constituencies are Democrats and white voters, but more than half of Republicans, independents and black voters all had favorable opinions of her as well.
Two of the last four District A representatives have been Republicans, but the GOP has been silent on possible challengers to Guidry. Former District A Councilman Scott Shea said the seat represents the best opportunity for Republicans to get on the council. "I would like to see at least one Republican on the City Council," Shea said, though he noted he's not interested in running again.
More activity has come from within the Democratic Party. In political circles, former School Board member Una Anderson's name has been mentioned as a possible challenger to Guidry, but Anderson did not respond to phone and email messages to her office at Harmony Neighborhood Development this week. — ROBERT MORRIS | UPTOWN MESSENGER