A Democrat Rhode Island governor who told residents to “stay home except for essential activities” was snapped in a photo at a wine and paint night.
“The picture, taken by Erica Oliveras last Friday, shows Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo sitting at table in Barnaby’s Public House in Providence without a mask,” Fox News reported.
But Erica Oliveras, who took the picture of Raimondo, said the backlash was blown out of proportion and did not realize the criticism the photo would receive with many people pointing out the governor did not have on a mask.
“She only took her mask off whenever she was drinking her wine,” Oliveras told ABC 6. “That’s the only time she took it off. When she came into the building she had her mask. Whenever the waiters approached her she had a mask on.”
According to the outlet, Raimondo was photographed in public at the “non essential” wine and paint night one day before Rhode Island’s Health Director Dr. Nicole Alexander-Scott tested positive for the coronavirus, prompting the governor and other officials to quarantine themselves.
In a tweet on December 7, the governor urged residents to stay home “except for essential activities & wear a mask anytime you’re with people you don’t live with.”
It’s week two of our pause. I know it's been hard, but I want to thank every Rhode Islander who's following our guidance. Please, stay home except for essential activities & wear a mask anytime you’re with people you don’t live with. Together, we can turn our case numbers around.
— Gina Raimondo (@GovRaimondo) December 7, 2020
In a tweet on Sunday morning, Raimondo said she tested negative for the illness a second time, adding, “I am fortunate to be feeling great and will continue working from home during my self-quarantine”:
“We are on fing pause. You should be setting an example. I would have loved to be out on Friday nite… but no…. I followed the rules,” one person commented.
“How did your painting come out on Friday? I specifically purchased a sketch book and supplies from Job Lot to do the same thing at home,” another replied.
Meanwhile, Rhode Island is currently on pause with indoor entertainment facilities like movie theaters, bowling centers, and arcades forced to close until December 20.
Restaurants and bars can only run at a third capacity and must close by 10pm on most weekdays and by 10.30pm on Fridays and Saturdays.
Josh Block, a spokesperson for the governor, told ABC 6, “The governor had dinner at a local restaurant with her husband, and had her mask on anytime she was not eating/drinking.”
Raimondo joins a growing list of Democrat politicians and lawmakers “who have fined, shamed, arrested, and violated their own orders which closed churches, schools and businesses in the name of public health over a virus with a 99.98 percent recovery rate,” according to The Post Millennial.
The list includes California Gov. Gavin Newsom, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, and Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.