NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - As a multi-faceted businessman and developer, Sidney Torres is accustomed to making multi-million dollar decisions. But deciding whether he should enter the city's mayor's race is proving tough for Torres.
"I know my mind can do it. My heart loves the city, my heart loves the people of this city, and it's hurting because I really want to do it. My mind and my heart want to do it. My gut is, as I've said all along, is struggling to make that decision," Torres told FOX 8 News.
"The reluctant warrior is not an unusual place for candidates. Remember Mayor Mitch Landrieu indicated that he was not going to run for eight years until he decided shortly before qualifying that he was going to run," said FOX 8 political analyst Mike Sherman.
On Wednesday Torres posted on his Facebook page stating that he was compelled to address "dirty politics" related to commercials he taped. On Thursday Torres spoke of his distaste for political antics as he tries to reach a decision on whether to join the mayoral contest.
"Things like leaking my spot, that went to local television stations," Torres said. "I mean I just don't like stuff like that. I mean, growing up in New Orleans I know politics is a full-contact sport, but you know, doing things like that before I even, you know, make a decision. I made two commercials, I made one running, and I made one not running."
He would not say who he believes leaked the commercial, stating he will not run to political operatives.
"You know, part of me, when I first heard it, my ego got in the way, and I'm like, 'I'm doing it and I'm doing it a hundred percent,'" Torres said.
Sherman weighed in on the leaked commercial issue.
"There's a little gamesmanship taking place right now for our three major announced candidates, all whom have qualified. Time to puff out their chests, get into Sidney Torres' head, or Troy Henry's or anyone else who's considering it and try to intimidate them from getting into this race. We'll know by tomorrow whether or not that strategy has worked," Sherman said.
"My mother called me and she just talked to me for about an hour and a half on the phone, and she said, 'You really need to keep praying about it, and don't let that get into your ego, and don't make a decision based off of that,'" said Torres.
And like most of the mayoral candidates who've already qualified, Torres does have a healthy dose of name recognition. He used his own resources to help crime in the French Quarter and has a waste disposal company, among other businesses.
"Until we know the list of what candidates have qualified, it's difficult to say what everyone's path to victory is," said Sherman. "But anyone with universal name recognition has a head start against a candidate who's relatively unknown."
Torres said he weighs his options carefully when making business decisions, and it should be no surprise that he is doing so in politics.
"The one thing I want the voters to know is if I make my decision to get in, there's one thing for sure: I'm in, and I'm in 100-percent," said Torres.
"Rumors abound about who will or won't get in the race, but the great thing about our system in Louisiana is it's put up or shut up time by close of business Friday. You either have qualified, or you haven't," said Sherman.
Local businessman Troy Henry said Thursday he continues to weigh whether to enter the race. Henry ran for the office against current Mayor Mitch Landrieu.