SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – After a big night out in wine country and a trip to Maui, Gov. Gavin Newsom and other state leaders are being called out for their hypocrisy in adopting the “do as I say, not as I do” philosophy.
The governor apologized for attending a lavish birthday party at The French Laundry in Napa.
Several lawmakers have been spotted at a resort in Maui.
“If you’re going to say something, own it,” said Lee Bias in Sacramento. “The conference is not as important as people’s health.”
Bias was recently diagnosed with cancer and calls it hypocritical to find out her local leaders are basking in paradise in Maui. While most everyone else is asked to stay home to protect those like her with weakened immune systems.
“I hate that ‘do as I say, not as I do.’ I’ve always hated that, you have to be a good example,” she said.
A travel advisory is in place but about a half dozen state lawmakers joined the annual conference hosted by the non-profit Independent Voter Project.
CBS13 reached out to several lawmakers to confirm their attendance, including Assemblyman Jim Cooper who serves Sacramento and parts of San Joaquin counties, and Assemblymember Heath Flora, who serves San Joaquin County.
The calls and messages were not returned.
“If you want folks to follow the rules, you should definitely be setting the example by following the rules,” Bias said.
Other lawmakers have defended the trip by calling it safe despite officials advising people not to travel or gather during the current COVID surge that has now prompted a month-long nighttime curfew throughout every California county in the purple tier.
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Political expert Gary Dietrich said it sends the wrong message.
“The challenge right now is in the midst of COVID and people are being told not to travel. The notion that their legislators have flown to Hawaii again does not seem to square with the requirements that the average person is being asked to follow,” he said.
The governor too was spotted not following his own social distancing guidelines.
Photos obtained by Fox 11 in Los Angeles show the governor, his wife, and lobbyists from the California Medical Association at the French Laundry in Yountville earlier this month.
No one wore masks – and it’s something his constituents aren’t letting go easily.
“That’s just a stupid choice he made,” Julio Rivera, from Sacramento, said.
The restaurant is in Napa County, which at the time of the dinner was allowed to offer limited indoor service. But now, can only serve outdoors.