Sarah Palin dined at multiple New York restaurants despite positive Covid test

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Palin, who is unvaccinated, was spotted at multiple city restaurants in violation of state and CDC health guidance

Sarah Palin, the former Republican vice-presidential candidate, has continued to dine out at New York City restaurants despite testing positive for Covid-19.

Related: Sarah Palin says she has Covid and urges people to wear masks

The ex-Alaska governor, who is not vaccinated, was spotted on Wednesday eating outdoors at the upper east side restaurant Elio’s after testing positive for the illness, according to photos published by Mediaite. Palin had dined at the same restaurant on Saturday night, where she was seen eating indoors in violation of city rules requiring proof of vaccination for indoor dining.

Palin was also seen eating outdoors Tuesday night at Campagnola, Gothamist reported. Under CDC guidance, people with Covid-19 should isolate for at least five days to avoid further spread.

The manager of Elio’s restaurant told the New York Times it was investigating Palin’s Saturday visit and that the restaurant had made a “mistake”. The manager told the Times that Palin had “probably just walked in and strolled over” to a table where she joined a regular customer.

Palin returned to the restaurant Wednesday evening. “Tonight Sarah Palin returned to the restaurant to apologize for the fracas around her previous visit,” Luca Guaitolini, Elio’s manager, said in a statement to Mediaite. “In accordance with the vaccine mandate and to protect our staff, we seated her outdoors. We are a restaurant open to the public and we treat all civilians the same.”

Elio’s restaurant on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. The restaurant is facing a backlash for allowing Sarah Palin to dine indoors without proof of Covid-19 vaccination.
Elio’s restaurant on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. The restaurant is facing a backlash for allowing Sarah Palin to dine indoors without proof of Covid-19 vaccination. Photograph: Stephen Lovekin/REX/Shutterstock

Palin confirmed her positive Covid test on Monday, which has delayed the start of her defamation trial against the New York Times in relation to a 2017 editorial on comments she made about gun violence.

City officials have encouraged New Yorkers who come into contact with Palin to test for Covid-19, and warned that she needs to “follow the rules just like everyone else”.

“By repeatedly flouting CDC guidelines, Ms Palin has shown a complete disregard for the health and safety of small business workers and her fellow patrons,” Jonah Allon, a New York city hall spokesperson, said in a statement to the Washington Post. “We encourage Ms Palin to join the 98% of New Yorkers who report they have followed guidance on isolation and have helped New York City stop the spread.”

Palin had previously tested positive for the illness in March 2021, but has been adamant about her opposition to receiving the vaccine.

“It’ll be over my dead body that I’ll have to get a shot. I will not do that. I won’t do it, and they better not touch my kids either,” she said at a conservative event in December 2021.

Vaccines offer crucial protection against serious illness and death from Covid-19, and are considered an important tool to prevent the development of new variants such as Omicron, which led to a rise in cases across the country. US cases, including in New York, have begun to fall after a surge around the holidays. More than 877,000 people have died of Covid-19 in the US since the start of the pandemic.

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