Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms won’t run for reelection

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms will not seek re-election this fall, the first-term Democrat announced Thursday night.

Bottoms plans to hold a news conference Friday morning with more details.

The mayor shared the news Thursday evening in a call with staff and allies, which the Atlanta Journal-Constitution was first to report.

Bottoms, who was elected in 2017, rose to national prominence during the 2020 election cycle as one of then-candidate Joe Biden’s earliest supporters and an outspoken critic of Gov. Brian Kemp’s decision to reopen Georgia, going toe-to-toe with him in court over her decision to enforce a mask mandate in the city of Atlanta.

She also was in the spotlight during the national civil rights upheaval ignited by the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody last May.

The announcement comes days after the reinstatement of the Atlanta police officer charged with murder in the shooting death of Rayshard Brooks in June. The officer will remain on administrative leave.

Bottoms had already begun fundraising for her reelection campaign, including an event with Biden. A few others have decided to run, but Bottoms’ announcement could widen the field. Atlanta City Council President Felicia Moore, a Democrat, has already announced plans to seek the post in the Nov. 2 election.

Bottoms faced a number of issues in the city over the past year regarding crime and public safety. In 2020, for instance, the city had a record number of homicides, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

“The mayor fully plans to lead through the end of her term,” her communications director, Elise Durham, said Thursday night.

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