From the Associated Press :
“We want our Saints, we may not want the owner back,”New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin (above) said while attending the reopening of Cafe Du Monde in the French Quarter.
“I’m ready to go to the NFL and to [commissioner Paul] Tagliabue and say, ‘Give us the Cleveland plan,'” Nagin added, referring to the league awarding Cleveland an expansion team almost immediately after the Browns moved to Baltimore after the 1995 season. “Whatever the Saints want to do, you let them leave, but they can’t take our logo, they can’t take our name, and you give us a promise to give us a franchise when this city’s back.”
While Benson seems creepy enough, I have to take issue with Mayor Nagin as to whether or not the Cleveland comparison holds water (sorry). Not only was Cleveland a far bigger market than New Orleans, but a plan was in place to build a new stadium after Art Modell skipped town. Benson was probably looking for a way out of New Orleans and Hurricane Katrina has provided the perfect excuse.