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Bottoms says she had 'very good conversation' with Kemp, hopeful they can 'agree to disagree'

The mayor appeared on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon last night.

ATLANTA — Speaking on "The Tonight Show" with Jimmy Fallon last night, Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms suggested a possible thaw in the recent political iciness between her and Gov. Brian Kemp.

The governor has launched a lawsuit against the mayor and Atlanta's city council over a mask mandate that was instituted in the city. Kemp's executive orders, to establish statewide guidelines in the response to the pandemic, have stipulated local governments can go no farther than his regulations - which do not include mask requirements.

A number of cities, including Savannah and Athens prior to Atlanta, have defied the governor and gone ahead with a mask mandate anyway. Only Atlanta is being sued.

RELATED: New judge, date set in Kemp v. Bottoms Atlanta mask lawsuit

It has made for an edgy political back-and-forth between the mayor, taking on a national profile as a potential pick to be Joe Biden's vice presidential running mate and Kemp.

But, she suggested Wednesday night on "The Tonight Show" that the two may have reached a more congenial understanding.

"I had a very good conversation with the governor. So we've discussed where we disagree and hopefully, we can figure out a way to agree to disagree without having to play this out in court," she said. "But at the end of the day, we want the same thing. We want people to be safe, we want to stop the spread of COVID-19 and it certainly doesn't help when we're having to fight one another."

She also spoke about her consideration as in the search for a running mate by the Biden.

RELATED: Bottoms co-signs letter objecting to presence of federal law enforcement agents in cities

"You know, there are 330-plus million people in America, so to have my name mentioned as a part of this list is just beyond anything that I ever imagined for my life," she said. "So I'm honored to be part of the conversation, and the end of the day, this is about Joe Biden being elected president of the United States because we all know we cannot take four more years of that man who's in the White House right now."

She also spoke with Fallon about the music career of her father, Major Lance, an R&B star in the 60s who was a close collaborator with Curtis Mayfield, opened for The Beatles, and toured with Elton John.

And the mayor spoke at length about Rep. John Lewis and his recent passing.

"The beauty of growing up in Atlanta - there are these giants that are real life. A lot of people only knew John Lewis from reading about him or watching him on television, but we would see him in the grocery store or in the drug store or anywhere in the city," she said. "He just always had time to talk to you, to make you feel special, and he just took pictures and selfies with everyone and I've never seen him complain, never seen him upset about anything other than injustices that we all know that he was so passionate about.

She called him "the nation's congressman" and "the best example of servant leadership that I've had."


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