California Governor Gavin Newsom is in hot water after getting caught attending a birthday party exceeding the 12-person limit which means he violated at least two of his own state's coronavirus rules even after stressing to Californians the importance of only interacting with family members of their own household.
Newsom admitted to attending the birthday party at the French Laundry restaurant just north of San Francisco with a dozen friends earlier this month.
“While our family followed the restaurant’s health protocols and took safety precautions, we should have modeled better behavior and not joined the dinner,” Newsom confessed in a statement.
Due to a recent surge in coronavirus cases the governor and local health officials are asking people to stay within their own households and if you must visit others they suggest meeting outside while including no more than three households. Everyone in attendance should still wear a mask, even outdoors, keep a safe social distance, and limit interactions to less than two hours.
According to a report from the San Francisco Chronicle, the dinner Newsom attended included twelve other people at the posh restaurant in Napa County. The gathering was a celebration of Newsom's friend and political advisor, Jason Kinney's 50th birthday.
Photos of the party were shared on social media and show the governor and his wife talking with another guest at what is estimated to be no less than six feet. No masks can be seen in the photos.
EXCLUSIVE: We've obtained photos of Governor Gavin Newsom at the Napa dinner party he's in hot water over. The photos call into question just how outdoors the dinner was. A witness who took photos tells us his group was so loud, the sliding doors had to be closed. 10pm on @FOXLA pic.twitter.com/gtOVEwa864
— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) November 18, 2020
Nathan Click, Newsom's spokesman, would not confirm if the governor was tested for the coronavirus after the event or if he even wore a mask while he wasn't eating or drinking, as he urged his citizens to do.
After catching a lot of heat for his hypocritical behavior at the party Newsom apologized and said he made a "bad mistake."
“I should have stood up and ... drove back to my house…" he said. "The spirit of what I’m preaching all the time was contradicted. I need to preach and practice, not just preach.”