Atlanta Mayor Slams Kemp’s Suit Against Mask Mandate: ‘He Is Putting Politics Over People’

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms speaks onstage during the 2019 Martin Luther King, Jr. Annual Commemorative Service at Ebenezer Baptist Church on January 21, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images)
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July 17, 2020 10:33 a.m.
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Atlanta Mayor Keisha Bottoms (D) tore into Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) on Friday morning after he filed a lawsuit against her over Atlanta’s citywide executive order requiring everyone to wear masks.

During an interview with “TODAY” co-host Savannah Guthrie, Bottoms described Kemp’s lawsuit as “simply bizarre, quite frankly,” given that other cities had also mandated masks, including the governor’s own hometown of Athens, Georgia, which had issued an executive order on masks the same day Atlanta had on July 8.

Bottoms is reportedly on Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s list of potential running mates. She noted that it wasn’t until she publicly called out President Donald Trump for refusing to wear a mask when he traveled to her city on Wednesday that Kemp issued a statewide ban on mask mandates and proceeded to sue her over the policy on Thursday.

“I don’t think it [was] happenstance that this lawsuit came the day after Donald Trump visited Atlanta and I pointed out that he was violating city law by not having on a mask at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport,” the mayor said.

She accused Kemp of “putting politics over people” and using “the same playbook we’ve seen coming out of the White House.”

“The governor has simply overstepped his bounds and his authority, and we’ll see him in court,” said Bottoms.

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