Atlanta mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has contracted COVID-19, she announced on Twitter Monday.
“COVID-19 has literally hit home. I have had NO symptoms and have tested positive,” Bottoms, 50, tweeted.
The first-term mayor told MSNBC that she and her family had chosen to be tested again because her husband “literally has been sleeping since Thursday,” though the only other symptoms the couple has experienced mirror those of seasonal allergies. One of Bottoms’s four children also tested positive for the virus.
“It leaves me for a loss for words because I think it really speaks to how contagious this virus is,” Bottoms told MSNBC. “We’ve taken all of the precautions that you can possibly take. We wear masks, we’re very thoughtful about washing our hands, I have no idea when and where we were exposed.”
Though she has encouraged mask wearing, it is not mandatory in the city.
Bottoms, a Democrat who is on Joe Biden’s list of potential running mates for the upcoming presidential election, has been criticized recently for her handling of protests and rioting in the city, including a violent Fourth of July weekend that resulted in the fatal shooting of an 8-year-old girl.
As protests in the city raged on after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody in May, and later, when Atlanta police fatally shot Rayshard Brooks last month after he seized a stun gun and fled from police, Bottoms had urged protesters to keep demonstrations peaceful and to get tested for COVID-19. She fired Atlanta officers for using excessive force during the protests and had for weeks allowed protesters to occupy and blockade the Wendy’s where Brooks was shot while she had open discussions with protesters, winning the approval of many progressives.
On Sunday, Bottoms ordered protesters to “clear out” of the Wendy’s, saying in a news conference, “You shot and killed a baby. Enough is enough.”
Governor Brian Kemp, a Republican, said Monday he would mobilize up to 1,000 National Guard troops after the violent weekend.