Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp's (R) office filed a lawsuit Thursday in an effort to block Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms from enforcing a citywide mask mandate, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
The big picture: The lawsuit comes a day after Kemp banned cities and counties from implementing mask mandates, voiding such orders implemented by at least 15 local governments. Kemp argues that the state's policy, which recommends but does not require masks in public, should override local policies.
- Kemp's decision to file a lawsuit will likely set up a legal battle between the state and local governments as they confront a surge in infections.
- The lawsuit, which names Bottoms and the City Council as defendants, argues Kemp has the power to "suspend municipal orders that are contradictory" to state laws or executive orders.
The state of play: The lawsuit challenges Bottom's decision to take Atlanta back to "phase one" guidelines on July 10, forcing restaurants to close dining rooms and other restrictions — including the new mask mandate.