Georgia governor sues to end Atlanta’s defiance on mask rules

Coronavirus

FILE – In this Wednesday, April 8, 2020, file photo, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp walks away after speaking during a news conference at the state Capitol in Atlanta. Kemp attracted widespread attention, criticism and even derision when he announced this week the resumption of elective medical procedures, as well as the reopening of certain close-contact businesses like gyms, barbershops and tattoo parlors. Kemp got no public pushback from Public Health Commissioner Kathleen Toomey, whom he appointed, but was criticized widely by public health experts at Georgia universities. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson, File)

ATLANTA (AP) – Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp is suing Atlanta to block the city from enforcing its mandate to wear a mask in public and other rules related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kemp and Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr, in a state court suit filed late Thursday, argued that Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has overstepped her authority and must obey Kemp’s executive orders under state law.

The suit comes a day after Kemp clarified his executive orders to expressly block Atlanta and at least 14 other local governments from requiring people to wear face coverings.

Kemp’s order was met with defiance Thursday by Bottoms and other mayors, who said they would continue enforcing their mandates and were prepared to go to court.

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