For months, Gov. Gavin Newsom has pleaded with Californians to resist the temptation to socialize with friends and relatives outside their household. Turns out, he’s the one who couldn’t resist.
Newsom acknowledged Friday he attended a birthday party with a dozen friends on Nov. 6 at the posh French Laundry restaurant in wine country north of San Francisco.
“While our family followed the restaurant’s health protocols and took safety precautions, we should have modeled better behavior and not joined the dinner,” he said in a statement.
His choice to do so could harm his credibility and alter his messaging as the state of nearly 40 million enters a critical holiday stretch with virus cases surging and health officials blaming the increase on social gatherings.
Sherry Bebitch Jeffe, a professor of public policy communication at the University of Southern California, noted people across the state have been canceling birthday parties, funerals and other important events to abide by the rules. Now, if Newsom tries to tighten the rules again, he may have lost some credibility.