The New York City Mayor’s Office has asked that anyone who came in contact with former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin (R) get a COVID-19 test amid controversy over her decision to dine at an Upper East Side restaurant despite testing positive.
City Hall spokesperson Jonah Allon encouraged “any New Yorker who came into contact with Ms. Palin to get tested, just as we encourage all New Yorkers to get tested regularly, especially those who believe they may have been exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”
“Our goal has always been to incentivize isolation for those testing positive for Covid and providing them multiple resources,” they said. “That being said we hope that anybody who has Covid is isolating for their own safety and the safety of all new Yorkers and find it highly irresponsible that Sarah Palin refuses to do so.”
Palin dined at popular New York restaurant Elio’s on Saturday despite not being vaccinated, what the restaurant’s management says was a “mistake.”
“We just made a mistake,” Luca Guaitolini, the restaurant’s manager, told The New York Times, saying that Palin “probably just walked in and strolled over.”
She later returned to the restaurant to apologize for the controversy and then was seated outdoors.
Palin tested positive for COVID-19 again, this time ahead of her defamation trial against The New York Times, in which she will state that the newspaper and its editor, James Bennett, defamed her in an opinion piece.
Palin tested positive after a rapid antigen test on Monday and “is of course unvaccinated,” according to U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff, who is presiding over the defamation case in Manhattan, adding that Palin will be retested to determine “whether the trial can proceed the same day or will be delayed.”
Palin has refused to get a COVID-19 vaccine, saying she’ll get one “over my dead body” and pushing falsehoods about “natural immunity” being better protection against the virus than just getting inoculated, claims that have been debunked by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
“We were led to believe that we wouldn’t have to have the shot. Well then they changed their tune and now those of us who have had Covid, they’re telling us that even though we’ve had it and we have natural immunity now that we still have to get a shot,” she told an audience of conservatives during an appearance at a Turning Point USA conference in December, adding: “It will be over my dead body that I’ll have to get a shot. I will not do it.”
Palin also encouraged the audience to “rise up” and fight back against vaccine mandates.
“You need to all look around and realize as you stiffen your spine and take those positions and we know our rights, especially when it comes to the government telling us what we have to inject in our own bodies, realize that those around you—as you stiffen your spine—their spines too will stiffen,” she said at the time.
Alan is a writer, editor, and news junkie based in New York.