Surprise! Mary Norwood and Keisha Lance Bottoms steal the show

The councilwomen and mayoral candidates are headed to a December runoff

Photo credit: Joeff Davis/CL file

Shortly after midnight, the results were clear: Councilwomen Mary Norwood and Keisha Lance Bottoms topped the charts in Tuesday's general election and will face off in a runoff next month. And now that the once-crowded contest has been whittled down to just two candidates, the heat is on.

Norwood and Bottoms were arguably the two most controversial contenders in Atlanta's mayoral race, but for entirely different reasons. The Buckhead-based Norwood has come under fire from the Democratic Party, due to suspicions of her Right-wing connections. She bills herself as an Independent politico, but she's been seen palling around with prominent GOP personnel and even has a staunch Donald Trump supporter for a campaign treasurer. Coming out as a bonafide Republican could spell trouble for Norwood's chances in the runoff, although, if elected mayor, conservative values would likely be an asset when conferring with lawmakers at the Georgia state House.

Bottoms, on the other hand, caught the ire of some Atlantans largely because of her bond with Mayor Kasim Reed and her alleged proximity to City Hall corruption. Reed and Bottoms were childhood friends, and his endorsement surprised not a soul in the city, although some people worry the Councilwoman, as mayor, would be 'Hizzoner: the sequel.' There are already concerns floating around about some of her campaign contributions, some of which came from city contractors via shady methods.

Luckily, voters now have a few weeks to mull over the options, and the pair of candidates has the breathing room to distinguish themselves in panel discussions and debates.


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