In the Crescent City, what goes down must come up.
Thanks to the dilapidated, crumbling infrastructure of the Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans, the much-maligned department is being hailed as a hero and whistleblower after catching mayoral candidate LaToya Cantrell attempting to destroy evidence related to a recently uncovered scandal.
Found crying in the bathroom of her campaign headquarters as water steadily rose around her and papers floated by, Cantrell initially told reporters not to come in as she was “dropping Charbonnets.”
“Uh, uh, just a minute — I’m not feeling too well! These Charbonnets are a real pain in the ass!” Cantrell reportedly shouted through the closed bathroom door in response to several knocks from reporters, as she furiously flushed the toilet over and over until it became clogged with evidence and began to overflow.
Reporters opened the door once water began flowing under their feet and found Cantrell in front of the clogged toilet with a plunger in hand.
Cantrell, under fire for having used her taxpayer-funded city credit card to pay for thousands of dollars in personal and political expenses since she took office in late 2012, reportedly tried to flush large amounts of physical and digital evidence related to the scandal, including a hard drive, paper documents, and a computer, as reporters arrived to question her about the allegations.
“She should have known better than to rely on anything to do with the city’s water system,” interim Sewerage and Water Board Director Hugh Janus said. “How could we trust her to run New Orleans if she doesn’t understand something that simple?”
According to Mayor Mitch Landrieu, the Sewerage and Water Board is a hero and totally should be remembered for that instead of any past regressions that may or may not have occurred.
“As we get closer to our tricentennial this May, which I — Mitch Landrieu, champion of the people, defender of all that is right, who has cleared his schedule for 2020 and whose incredibly moving resume is available upon request, — will oversee, I’d like us all to focus on the great things in our city, like the courage those in charge of the Sewerage and Water Board have shown. I am proud and urge all the people of New Or-lee-ans to be as well. I… uh… they are heroes.”
State law prohibits using public money for personal or campaign expenses. And while Cantrell paid back the money in several payments, sometimes months and even years later, the camp of opponent Desiree Charbonnet argued that it shouldn’t matter.
“The simple truth is if LaToya ‘Clogtrell’ can’t handle a toilet, she can’t be trusted with pumps. If you want the city to look like that flooded bathroom, then vote for her. But we think it’s time New Orleans got a courtesy flush.”
Cantrell’s camp said the whole incident was one big misunderstanding and has now voluntarily released a list of trips when city her credit card had been used, though tiny bits of Charbonnets had to be wiped from several pages.