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Michigan governor apologizes after photo shows her violating her own COVID-19 restrictions

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer
Posted at 8:20 AM, May 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-24 08:55:20-04

LANSING, Mich. — Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has issued an apology after a photo surfaced that shows her violating her own COVID-19 restrictions while at a bar and restaurant in East Lansing this weekend.

In the photo, first published by the conservative news outlet Breitbart, Whitmer is seen with 12 other people who are gathered around pushed-together tables at Landshark Bar & Grill in East Lansing. None of them are wearing masks or socially distancing.

Their actions appear to violate current state health orders, which limit tables to six people at a restaurant. Additional groups must be six feet apart.

On Sunday, the governor apologized for what she called a mistake.

"Throughout the pandemic, I’ve been committed to following public health protocols. Yesterday, I went with friends to a local restaurant. As more people arrived, the tables were pushed together. Because we were all vaccinated, we didn't stop to think about it," Whitmer said in a statement. “In retrospect, I should have thought about it. I am human. I made a mistake, and I apologize.”

Republicans, meanwhile, are calling the governor's actions hypocritical. Tori Sachs, executive director of the conservative Michigan Freedom Fund, says that Whitmer should immediately end all existing restrictions.

“It’s ridiculous the rest of us have to abide by these ridiculous rules while Whitmer doesn’t,” Sachs wrote on Twitter.

According to Breitbart, the photo was posted to Facebook by one of the governor’s friends as part of a photo gallery. The photo with Whitmer has since been taken down.

This now the latest pandemic misstep from Whitmer, who most recently caught heat for a personal trip to Florida she took in March to visit her ailing father.

This story was originally published by Aaron Parseghian on Scripps station WXMI in Grand Rapids, Michigan.