Transcript for Atlanta mayor comments on Biden VP speculation
Some of the earliest schools to reopen in Georgia are already facing backlash with reports of crowded hallways, very little social distancing and now, new positive cases. Here to discuss the reopening of schools in Georgia is Atlanta mayor Keisha Lance bottoms. I know that you've seen that photo that has gone viral of the jam-packed hallway in north Paulding high outside of Atlanta. That school now closed after nine people reportedly tested positive. Virtual learning as the school is cleaned. What's your reaction to this photo and what more needs to be done? Well, thank you for having me. When I see that photo, Amy, what it reminds me of is, is just how dangerous this virus remains, even closing the schools for cleaning, once you come in contact and you've been infected with covid-19, the damage is done. So no amount of cleaning will help save any of the students or the cafeteria workers or school bus drivers or anyone else who's been infected with this. I'm very pleased that the Atlanta public school system has decided to go virtual only for decided to go virtual only for the first nine weeks of school, and then they will take an opportunity to revisit the plan and I think that's what school systems should do across this country, or at the very least give parents, teachers, and students an option as to whether or not they will engage in in-person learning. It's too soon in our state. It makes total sense. And speaking of options, this one is interesting, the superintendent of Georgia schools said the photo was taken out of context, he also said wearing a mask is a personal choice and he said there's no practical way to force or mandate to wear them. What is your thought on that? If we can put rules in place that say kids who are learning virtually can't wear slippers, then certainly you can mandate mask wearing in schools, there are all sort of attire restrictions when students are in school, but the reality is this, they are kids. So I was out with my kids a couple of days ago and I was frustrated and scared as the number of times I saw them taking their mask on and off and that's what kids do. This is a pandemic. We're not in a normal situation. We can't make normal decisions right now. This shouldn't be a personal we require people to wear seat belts. We require students to have a certain number of hours before they get their driver's license so we should be able to require them to wear masks. If we can't enforce that, they shouldn't be in a classroom right now in Georgia. Mayor, I can't let you go without asking you a little something about a short list that your name has been on, Joe Biden is now going to pick his vice president any day now, we know it's going to be a woman, your name has been on the list. Just curious, have you been in touch with his team recently? Well, I have been a part of the campaign for over a year, so I'm in touch with team weekly, if not daily, but I'll stay tuned to ABC and I'll get my news when you give it. We certainly appreciate all of your time and certainly we know you've been so business. Mayor Keisha Lance bottoms, thank you for being with us. Thank you.
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