Atlanta mayor slams governor for trying to gag her on face mask mandate

Atlanta mayor slams governor for trying to gag her on face mask mandate

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms (D) lashed out at Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) for trying to block her order requiring face masks, and for attempting to silence her complaints.

Too many have “sacrificed ... for me to be silent,” the mayor wrote on Instagram over the weekend.

Kemp is suing the mayor and Atlanta’s city council to block the state’s largest city from enforcing its local mandate to wear a face mask in public and other regulations aimed at reducing the spread of COVID-19.

Kemp’s lawsuit argues that the mayor overstepped her authority, and that it should be up to the governor to “manage the public health emergency” in the state where cases are soaring.

Kemp last week voided orders in Atlanta and more than a dozen other localities, claiming they had no power to impose restrictions.

Bottoms is defying him. The mayor posted a page from Kemp’s lawsuit on Instagram, highlighting a portion that seeks to “restrain Mayor Bottoms from issuing press releases, or making statements to the press” about her authority to impose emergency health orders.

Bottoms, who has tested positive for COVID-19, defiantly announced at a video news conference the day Kemp filed his lawsuit that Atlanta’s face mask requirement remained in effect.

“A better use of taxpayer money would be to expand testing and contact tracing” the mayor said. “If being sued by the state is what it takes to save lives in Atlanta, then we will see them in court.”

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This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.