A List Of Politicians and Elites Breaking Pandemic Rules

Continuing from our 2020 list, here are the most prominent instances in 2021 of COVID-related hypocrisy by America's elite.

Updated Feb. 11: Corrected info regarding July 12th story

Written by Hudson Crozier

This list, organized by report date, is far from exhaustive as it contains only the clearest examples.

Jan. 4th: The House of Representatives hosted their opening day of 2021 with pandemic guidelines for the 430 members present to avoid congregating on the House floor, but they were ignored as representatives talked amongst themselves less than 6 feet apart. Some Republicans present, however, were openly scolded by Democrats for not wearing masks.

Jan. 21st: On his inauguration day, President Biden and his family members were seen maskless at the Lincoln Memorial after he had mandated mask-wearing on federal property. When asked about the event at a press briefing, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki assured reporters that everyone in the administration was taking "a number of COVID precautions" such as mask-wearing, pointing at herself as she spoke despite also being maskless on federal property.

Feb. 24th: At a restaurant closed for indoor service due to his local COVID restrictions, Governor Gavin Newsom (D-California) hosted a bill-signing event with several lobbyists.

Mar. 16th: As many California K-12 schools remained closed under his governance, Newsom commented to CNN that he understood the "challenges" families had faced with online learning, claiming he had also been "living through Zoom school" with his four children. His office later confirmed that his children had been returned to in-person private schooling several months ago.

Apr. 23rd: After canceling senior prom and restricting their students' outgoing graduation ceremony, an Arizona school board was discovered planning a retirement party for its superintendent, for which members were allowed to bring up to 10 guests while students could only bring 2 to their graduation. After public backlash, they adjusted it to 4 guests for both.

May 23rd: After issuing an order limiting public gatherings to 6 people per socially-distanced table, Governor Gretchen Whitmer (D-Michigan) was photographed in her state with 12 friends seated together at a restaurant. "Because we were all vaccinated," she later admitted, "we didn't stop to think about it. In retrospect, I should have thought about it. I am human, I made a mistake, and I apologize.''

July 12th: When an election integrity bill was predicted to pass through Texas' mostly Republican legislature, several House Democrats fled the state to illegally stall the vote, hoping to prevent its passage. During their plane trip to Washington D.C., they posted photos in which none of them wore masks, breaking federal masking rules for chartered flights. Three of them later tested positive for COVID. None of them were prosecuted.

  • In September, due to the same mandate, a mother and her 2-year-old son were removed from an American Airlines flight after a passenger alerted staff that her child wasn't wearing a mask properly. She tried to explain that her asthmatic son, who tested negative the day before, had never worn a mask before and was hyperventilating, but the plane was turned around and landed back at the airport. The mother said they were escorted off the flight by police.

July 28th: Governor Newsom sent his children to a summer camp that had no indoor mask rules, contrary to his own state law. Shortly after photo evidence emerged, he had his children removed from the camp.

Aug. 1st: Less than 24 hours after issuing a local indoor mask mandate, Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser was seen maskless indoors at a wedding she officiated. When a Washington Examiner reporter asked why the mayor and the guests weren't following the mandate, security escorted the reporter out. Bowser's office later claimed she had only neglected to wear one while eating or drinking, which photos proved was false, and berated ''conservative media'' for the criticism.

Aug 7th: During the outbreak of the Delta variant, former President Barack Obama hosted a giant birthday celebration at his 30-acre estate in Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts. Cases in Martha's Vineyard the week before the party had doubled since the week prior. His family claimed to have reduced the original guest list to family and close friends due to COVID concerns, but hundreds of celebrities still arrived. They also claimed the party was outdoors to fit CDC guidelines, but hundreds of guests were confined to a large closed tent. Obama and his guests were seen partying without masks or social distancing, and vaccinations were not required.

Aug. 9th: After Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) released a video airing skepticism to the validity of CDC guidelines, Representative Rashida Tlaib (D-Michigan) responded on Twitter with a map of Kentucky showing multiple areas with a ''high incidence rate'' of cases according to the CDC. She urged Paul to ''put politics aside, and put people first. Start resisting the virus.'' That same day, she was seen dancing and socializing maskless at a wedding in a Michigan county that the CDC had deemed an area of ''substantial'' risk where individuals ought to wear masks regardless of vaccination status.

Aug. 31st: Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) has vocally endorsed masking since 2020 on social media, arguing they should be worn by ''anyone in Congress who cares about the health and safety of their fellow Americans.'' In August, she and Secretary of the Interior Deb Halaand partied at a New Mexico resort without masks, violating the state's indoor mask rule.

Sep. 10th: Mayor Bowser tweeted a photo of her and eight other women standing close together without masks inside a D.C. building, once again violating her own indoor rule with no explanation.

Sep. 13th: Nevada Congresswomen Jacky Rosen and Susie Lee neglected to wear masks at an indoor party the day after a local indoor mask rule went into effect.

Sep 14th: Photos of the Met Gala were released in which guests such as Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-California) and many celebrities wore no masks while receiving service from masked staffers. Rules for the event required guests to wear masks while not eating or drinking. The Gala was held in New York as the state's schools mandated masks for children.

Sep. 15th: After he had repeatedly encouraged the public to wear masks, a photo surfaced of gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe (D-Virginia) maskless on a train. Masks were required on the train by federal law.

Sep 16th: San Francisco Mayor London Breed (D) was seen partying, dancing, singing, and posing for photos at a nightclub without a mask on, violating her own indoor mask rule. She assured a reporter that she was ''very careful'' about her habits against the virus, noting that everyone present was required to show proof of vaccination, which gave her ''a lot of reassurance.''

Sep. 19th: Contrary to current CDC guidelines, celebrities at the Emmy Awards Show in Los Angeles didn't wear masks as they were served by masked staffers. LA County had mandated masks indoors for all citizens, but their Department of Health later clarified that "exemptions are made for film, television, and music productions'' and that ''persons appearing on the [Emmys] are considered performers'' who are exempt.

Sep. 20th: Mayor Breed was seen at the same nightclub violating her indoor mask rule again. She responded to the press, ''Don't feel as though you have to be micromanaged about mask-wearing. Like, we don't need the fun police to come in and try and micromanage and tell us what we should or shouldn't be doing. We know what we need to do to protect ourselves.'' She neglected to clarify the purpose or justification for her mandate, given her reasoning. She also claimed she only had her mask off while eating and drinking, in accordance with her rule, but videos and photos showed her singing, dancing, and posing for photos maskless.

Oct. 18th: Joe and Jill Biden were caught on camera maskless inside a D.C. restaurant, contrary to Mayor Bowser's indoor rule. When asked about it later, Press Secretary Psaki urged not to focus on ''moments in time that don't reflect overarching policy.''

Oct. 18th: Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot attended a WNBA game maskless in her city, contrary to local and state law.

Oct. 21st: Representative Lee once again violated her state's indoor mask rule by partying and dancing maskless at a gala.

Oct. 25th: Governor Whitmer was seen maskless around several masked individuals in a hotel that required her to wear one.

Nov. 6th: Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-New York) broke a local indoor mask mandate in Puerto Rico as he danced maskless at a party.

Nov. 17th: Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-California) and Representative Yvette Clark (D-New York) were photographed conversing at a D.C. bar with other patrons while not wearing masks, breaking Mayor Bowser's indoor rule.

Nov. 19th: At a cafe in D.C., presidential adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci was spotted maskless, breaking Mayor Bowser's indoor rule.

Nov. 27th: After a speech in Detroit, a maskless President Biden shook hands with several masked individuals before putting one on to have a picture taken with them.

Nov. 29th: At a televised White House children's event, 17 kids sat in the dining room as Jill Biden read them a book. While she wore no mask, each child was masked and wore armbands indicating they had been tested.

Nov. 30th: House Speaker Pelosi was photographed maskless at a Washington D.C. party surrounded by others wearing masks, including a child she was seen speaking to. Tickets for the event contained requirements for every guest over two years old to be masked.

Dec. 4th: President Biden was seen maskless inside a D.C. restaurant. As D.C. had lifted its indoor mask rule the previous week, the White House had encouraged indoor mask rules to continue due to the rise of the Omicron variant.

Dec. 16th 2021: A United Airlines passenger sent a photo to The Daily Wire of Representative Maxine Waters (D-California) maskless a few seats from her despite federal guidelines for commercial flights. The passenger claimed, however, that flight attendants frequently approached other passengers to instruct them to wear their masks properly. After Waters was maskless for about an hour, an attendant finally told her to wear one after the passenger who took the photo complained of the discrepancy.

Jan. 31st 2022: Governor Newsom, Mayor Breed, and L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti (D) posted photos of themselves online with NBA legend "Magic" Johnson at a football game in L.A. County. None of them wore masks in the photos despite county rules. Newsom and Garcetti explained to the press that they had put their own health judgments above the strict letter of the law.

  • Newsom said he was "very judicious" about when to keep his mask on.

  • Garcetti claimed he had held his breath while taking photos. "There's a zero percent chance of infection from that," he argued.

  • Mayor Breed declined to comment publicly on the incident.

Newsom's state guidelines currently require all California students to wear masks until Feb. 15th. Multiple students who were kicked out of classes for refusing to wear them said they did so after seeing the photos.

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