Bottoms picks up endorsement from opponent in Atlanta mayor’s race


Atlanta City Councilman Kwanza Hall on Tuesday endorsed Keisha Lance Bottoms over Mary Norwood in the mayor’s race.

Hall, so far, is the only mayoral candidate who lost this month’s election to publicly support one of the two city councilwomen in the Dec. 5 runoff.

Hall made the announcement standing in the John Wesley Dobbs Plaza with his wife Natilie — who’s also in a runoff in the Fulton County District 4 commissioner race.

Hall said Norwood and Bottoms “are really good individuals, but the finest of the two is standing right beside me.”

Now that the crowded field of candidates had narrowed, Hall said he would help Bottoms refine her message — a process that revealed itself during Tuesday’s press conference.

Hall said that Mayor Kasim Reed is leaving the city in a financially strong position but now Atlanta needed “to accelerate exponentially the addressing of inequality, as well as addressing the issues that bring families and children out of poverty, out of the margins and into the mainstream of our city.”

Themes of poverty and inequality resonate with progressives — a large block of liberal voters that could swing the election.

When Bottoms accepted the endorsement, she borrowed a line from Hall’s campaign: “We have been great about building buildings, but not so great about building people.”

In most of the city, the vote will likely break along racial and geographical lines. But the so-called “in-town” neighborhoods, some of which are in Hall’s district, are up for grabs, Hall said.

Former City Council President Cathy Woolard, who placed third in race, dominated in those areas. Woolard and former state Sen. Vincent Fort were widely considered the most progressive candidates.

During the campaign, Hall criticized the Reed’s administration’s handling of city contracts, saying that too many corporations had been feeding at the city trough for too long.

Bottom’s campaign has by far received the most donations from people and entities competing for a package of retail contracts at Atlanta’s Hartfield-Jackson International Airport.

Asked how he reconciles his endorsement on Tuesday with his previous statements, Hall said: “It’s legal for any vendor, contractor or business to make contributions to candidates. They make them at the city level, state level and national level. That’s not fair to hit anyone on … If I would have got some of their donors, I probably would have been in the runoff.”

MYAJC.COM: REAL JOURNALISM. REAL LOCAL IMPACT.

The AJC’s Stephen Deere keeps you updated on the latest in the Atlanta mayoral race and everything else going on at City Hall. You'll find more on myAJC.com, including these stories:

Never miss a minute of what's happening in Atlanta politics. Subscribe to myAJC.com.


Reader Comments ...

Next Up in Local

Another arrest made in shooting at university
Another arrest made in shooting at university

Another person has been arrested in connection with a shooting that injured two people at Albany State University in southwest Georgia, university police said Saturday.  Ronderrious Huntley, 20, was charged with aggravated assault, and he’s being taken to the Dougherty County Jail, according to a news release.  University police still...
Certified recount gives Atlanta City Council post to Bond
Certified recount gives Atlanta City Council post to Bond

After a recount of votes cast in a race for at-large Atlanta City Council seat, Fulton County election authorities officially certified the results that showed incumbent Michael Julian Bond narrowly defeating challenger Courtney English. But the contest may not be over. The Fulton County Board of Registration and Elections’ unanimous vote...
Rain and cooler weather on the way
Rain and cooler weather on the way

Today: Clouds in afternoon. High: 70 Tonight: Wind and rain. Low: 42 Tomorrow: Windy. High: 54 Saturday’s warmth and rain should give way to cooler temperatures Sunday and into the week. Rain should move into metro Atlanta on Saturday by 8 p.m., according to Channel 2 Action News. Sunday’s high is forecast at 54, far below the 70 expected...
Bodies of Atlanta rapper, cousin found
Bodies of Atlanta rapper, cousin found

The bodies of an Atlanta rapper and his cousin have been found in Alabama, according to authorities. The bodies of Edward Reeves, whose stage name is Bambino Gold, and cousin Kendrick Stokes were found in Macon County, Ala., the sheriff confirmed. The bodies were found Friday night and Saturday, according to a report by WTVM, a...
Documents: Montana congressman misled investigators after assaulting reporter
Documents: Montana congressman misled investigators after assaulting reporter

A Montana congressman misled investigators about his assault on a reporter the day before he was elected in May, claiming that “liberal media” were “trying to make a story,” the Bozeman Daily Chronicle reported Saturday, citing audio and documents. U.S. Rep. Greg Gianforte, a Republican, told an officer in an audio interview...
More Stories