COVID Hypocrisy: Policymakers Breaking Their Own Rules

Updated January 15, 2021 /

Rules for thee but not for me? The interactive map below shows the continuing hypocrisy of local, state, and federal officials who violate their own coronavirus mandates, policies, or other restrictions, with 52 reported instances to date, and counting. Some officials have violated their own rules more than once. See the full list at bottom.

Don’t see a reported instance involving one of your leaders on this map? Email with a link to the story and we will add it to the map.

List of Incidents

DatePublic OfficialLocationIncident
Jan. 4Federal LawmakersWashington, D.C.Congressmen don’t abide by social distancing guidelines during swearing-in
Jan. 3Rep. Gwen MooreWashington, D.C.Shows up to House to vote for Speaker Pelosi despite COVID diagnosis
Dec. 31Mayor Bill de BlasioNew York, N.Y.Tells New Yorkers not to celebrate New Years in Times Square, then celebrates in Times Square
Dec. 27County Executive Mark PoloncarzAmherst, N.Y.Caught skating and playing hockey on ice rink that his county had closed
Dec. 21County Manager Dena DiorioCharlotte, N.C.Urges Charlotte residents not to travel for Christmas, then says she’s traveling
Dec. 13Gov. Tim WalzSt. Paul, Minn.Hosts music group at his home despite order against gatherings
Dec. 12Mayor Mark EckertBelleville, Ill.Goes to St. Louis for indoor dining after banning it in his town
Dec. 11Gov. Gina RaimondoProvidence, R.I.Attends social event at bar, takes off mask despite closing bars, mask mandates
Dec. 7Ald. Tom TunneyChicago, Ill.Allows indoor dining at a restaurant he owns
Dec. 7California LawmakersSacramento, Calif.Observe social distancing at swearing-in ceremony, then go to dinner together
Dec. 4Judge Clay JenkinsDallas, TexasPushes mask-wearing, but officiates a wedding while taking mask off
Dec. 2Mayor Steve AdlerAustin, TexasTells citizens to stay home while on vacation in Cabo
Dec. 2Gov. John Bel EdwardsBaton Rouge, La.Seen without a mask at a dinner gathering
Dec. 1County Supervisor Sheila KuehlLos AngelesVotes to prohibit outdoor dining, then goes dining outdoors hours later
Nov. 27Dr. Deborah BirxFenwick Island, Del.Urges Americans to limit Thanksgiving guests, then travels to Delaware vacation home with other family households
Nov. 26Judge Glen WhitleyFort Worth, TexasHosts large Thanksgiving gathering after telling others not to host parties
Nov. 26Mayor Sam LiccardoSan Jose, Calif.Celebrates Thanksgiving with family in violation of health guidelines
Nov. 25Mayor Michael HancockDenver, Colo.Travels out of state for holiday despite telling citizens not to travel
Nov. 24Judge Bill GravellAustin, TexasFined for violating his own stay-at-home order
Nov. 24Gov. Kate BrownSalem, Ore.Tells people to “uninvite” loved ones for holiday but encouraged protests
Nov. 23Gov. Andrew CuomoAlbany, N.Y.Cancels Thanksgiving plans with non-household family after backlash
Nov. 20California LawmakersMaui, HawaiiLawmakers attend conference in Hawaii despite travel guidelines
Nov. 17Sen. Dianne FeinsteinWashington, D.C.Doesn’t wear mask in congressional halls despite calling for mask mandates
Nov. 14New York LawmakersBrooklyn, N.Y.N.Y. lawmakers, elites party together in violation of rules
Nov. 13House Speaker Nancy PelosiWashington, D.C.Cancels dinner at Rotunda for new House members after backlash
Nov. 7Mayor Lori LightfootChicago, Ill.Joins pro-Biden crowd celebrating election result
Nov. 7Gov. J.B. PritzkerChicago, Ill.Joins pro-Biden celebration outside after being exposed to coronavirus
Nov. 7Sen. Chuck SchumerNew York CitySeen in massive crowd, lowering mask during Biden celebration
Nov. 7Mayor London BreedSan Francisco, Calif.Attends same fancy restaurant as Gov. Gavin Newsom despite guidance
Nov. 7Mayor Muriel BowserWashington, D.C.Travels to Delaware for Biden election party
Nov. 6Gov. Gavin NewsomYountville, Calif.Attends fancy dinner party with no distancing, then lies about it
Sep. 25Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDulles Airport, Va.Doesn’t wear mask at airport despite calling for mask mandate
Aug. 31Gov. Tate ReevesJackson, Miss.Extends mask mandate after going maskless at RNC events in North Carolina and DC
Aug. 31House Speaker Nancy PelosiSan Francisco, Calif.Gets haircut indoors with no mask, despite being prohibited in San Francisco
Aug. 30Mayor Jim KenneyPhiladelphia, Pa.Travels to Maryland to dine indoors while indoor dining is prohibited in own city
Jul. 20Mayor Quinton LucasLake of the Ozarks, Mo.Implements mask mandate, then takes photo without masks
Jul. 20Gov. Andrew CuomoSavannah, Ga.Engages in non-essential travel to Georgia despite strict N.Y. guidelines
Jul. 20Gov. Andrew CuomoSavannah, Ga.Hugs city official without wearing a mask
Jun. 8Gov. Phil MurphyTrenton, N.J.Blesses participation in protests while mandating lockdowns
Jun. 6Gov. Tom WolfHarrisburg, Pa.Apologizes for “inconsistent” behavior in forcing lockdowns but attending protests
Jun. 6Mayor Muriel BowserWashington, D.C.Attends George Floyd protest, gives speech with no mask while gatherings of more than 10 were prohibited
Jun. 4Gov. Gretchen WhitmerDetroit, Mich.Marches with protestors with no social distancing
Jun. 2Mayor Eric GarcettiLos AngelesAllows, and participates in, mass protests while outlawing other gatherings
May. 30Mayor John CooperNashville, Tenn.Encourages attending protests while city remains in a partial lockdown
May. 29Mayor Jacob FreyMinneapolis, Minn.Says church services would be “public health disaster” but city then gives masks to protesters
May. 26Gov. Gretchen WhitmerLansing, Mich.Governor’s husband tries to get preferential treatment, as governor calls for caution
May. 23Gov. Ralph NorthamVirginia Beach, Va.Mingles with people without mask despite urging mask-wearing
Apr. 21Mayor Becky AmesBeaumont, TexasGoes to nail salon in violation of state guidelines
Apr. 5Gov. Michelle Lujan GrishamAlbuquerque, N.M.Orders non-essential businesses closed, then orders jewelry and has it delivered to her
Apr. 5Mayor Lori LightfootChicago, Ill.Gets haircut even though barbers and stylists were shut down
Apr. 4Mayor Brant WalkerAlton, Ill.Calls on citizens to stay home, then wife is found at social gathering
Mar. 16Mayor Bill de BlasioNew York CityGoes to gym after cautioning others to avoid them

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