Lt. Gov. Landrieu Elected New Orleans Mayor

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NEW ORLEANS - Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu has been elected mayor of New Orleans, the city's first white mayor since his father left office in 1978.

A moderate Democrat, Landrieu, 49, won a landslide victory over a field of 10 candidates, with 66 percent of the vote.

"We're all going together and we're not leaving anybody behind," the mayor-elect told a cheering crowd that included his father, Moon, and his sister, U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu.

The people of New Orleans, Landrieu said, had decided to "strike a blow for unity, strike a blow for a city that decided to be unified rather than divided, a city that understands where there is equal opportunity, there is equal responsibility."

New Orleans residents have become increasingly discontented with the slow pace of the city's recovery following Hurricane Katrina, slumping finances, alleged political corruption and high rate of violent crime.

Outgoing Mayor C. Ray Nagin, prevented by law to run for a third term, told voters in the 2006 election that New Orleans would be a "chocolate city" again, a comment that disturbed some white residents.

Nagin's popularity has decreased sharply with the city struggle to recover from Katrina.

Landrieu, whose father helped desegregate New Orleans during his term, drew strong support from black voters, who wanted a mayor experienced in good governance.

"I certainly don't want another Ray Nagin - a businessman," Charlotte Ford, a 76-year-old registered Republican, told The Associated Press. "They balk instead of finding out what works, how the system works."


The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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