Political Insider

An AJC blog about Atlanta politics, Georgia politics, Georgia and metro Atlanta election campaigns. Because all politics is local.

Bottoms calls for AG inquiry into racist robo-calls

On the same evening that an independent poll put Keisha Lance Bottoms in the lead for the first time, the Atlanta mayoral candidate demanded that the state Attorney General Chris Carr investigate a Friday afternoon racist robo-call that urged listeners to line up behind her “to keep Atlanta black.”

The automated call was attributed to Bottoms, who appears to be in a neck-and-neck race with Mary Norwood, a fellow councilwoman who is white. Bottoms is African-American.

The calls profess to be the work of “Citizens for Keisha,” which the candidate denies. From Bottoms, in the press release:

“I find the robo-call personally disgusting and such tactics have no place in this election.  The calls are also illegal.  I hope the people responsible are revealed and they suffer the legal consequences they deserve.”

The calls appear to be targeted at east Atlanta and Buckhead communities, an indication that they are intended to drive up white votes. Listen to it here:

A quick transcription:

“Keep Atlanta black. Vote Keisha Lance Bottoms. A vote for [City Council President] Ceasar Mitchell is a wasted vote. Only Keisha can stop the white takeover of City Hall. On Nov. 7, vote Keisha Lance Bottoms to keep Atlanta black.”

This isn’t the first instance of a “black slate” move in the mayoral race. More background on dirty tricks can be found here.

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About the Author

Jim Galloway is a three-decade veteran of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution who writes the Political Insider blog and column.