Atlanta Mayoral Election Advance Into Runoff

Felicia Moore, Atlanta City Council president and mayoral candidate, becomes emotional while hugging a longtime supporter at her election night party Tuesday.

AP

Felicia Moore, Atlanta City Council president and mayoral candidate, becomes emotional while hugging a longtime supporter at her election night party Tuesday.

With incumbent mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms stating she will not run for re-election, over a dozen candidates seek to be the next mayor of Atlanta. 

On Tuesday November 2nd, a general election was held where voters took to the polls. A large portion of the polls indicated that many voters were unsure of which candidate they were going to support. 

Candidate Felicia Moore, President of the Atlanta City Council, gained the majority vote (41%), taking first place. Andre Dickens, a member of the Atlanta City Council, gained the second most votes (23%), taking second place in the general election. Other candidates included former mayor of Atlanta, Kasim Reed, who came in third with 22% and attorney for the global firm Dentons, Sharon Gay in fourth with 7% of the votes.

Despite taking the majority vote, Moore did not receive over 50% of the votes needed to outright win the mayoral position, therefore advancing the race into the seventh runoff in Atlanta since 1973. The runoff election is scheduled for November 30, 2021 where only Felicia Moore and Andre Dickens, the top 2 candidates, are on the ballot. 

The serious topic that the candidates had to focus on, were that of rising crime, especially those of homicide in the city. Data from the Atlanta Police Department shows that homicide cases have increased from 99 in 2019 to 157 in 2020. 

Dicken declares that, “[Atlanta’s police force] needs to be able to provide a nuanced response to the community and that requires hiring and training a police force that is prepared to do more than simply arrest and incarcerate our community.”

Moore, taking a different approach, states, “We deserve a mayor who will address the crime and violence now and its root causes in the long term…—making every neighborhood safer, no matter what income bracket or zip code. I am the only candidate with a comprehensive approach to public safety that including how to immediately increase patrols while we reform how to recruit and train in a post-George Floyd era.” 

Nevertheless, both candidates’ goals include to increase the number of police officers and reform training, to better handle deescalate and eliminate racial profiling. 

As of currently, both runoff candidates continue to campaign and influence voters in Atlanta, to diminish the large undecided portion of voters in the general election. Soon, a new mayor will be sworn in on January 3rd, 2022.