Michelle Bachmann, the one-time Republican presidential candidate and a noted ally of former President Donald Trump, claimed former Alaska Republican Governor Sarah Palin should be "commended" for dining out at a New York City restaurant even though she had tested positive for COVID-19.
Bachmann declared that Palin should “be commended because she’s trying to act like a normal human being in the greatest city in America,” suggesting that Palin was making a valuable political point when she violated New York City's vaccine mandate.
You can hear what Bachmann said in the video below.
Bachmann went on to say that Americans should “start resuming normal American life" rather than spend time "cowering in our basements."
Her remarks came after Palin dined at popular New York restaurant Elio’s despite not being vaccinated, what the restaurant’s management says was a “mistake.” In an interview with The New York Times, restaurant manager Luca Guaitolini said that Palin “probably just walked in and strolled over.”
Palin later returned to the restaurant to apologize for the controversy and then was seated outdoors.
Bachmann was criticized for her remarks, with many criticizing her and Palin for encouraging behavior that puts other people at risk of contracting COVID-19.
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).
Though Palin has continued to minimize the seriousness of the pandemic, she has, ironically, promoted mask-wearing, particularly after she herself caught COVID-19 in the spring of 2021.
She told People "despite my joking that I’m blessed to constantly breathe in the most sterile air, my case is perhaps one of those that proves anyone can catch this.”