FACT CHECK: Does This Photo Show Michigan Gov Gretchen Whitmer Violating Social Distancing Rules For A Beer Tasting?
An image shared on Facebook more than 900 times purportedly shows Democratic Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer ignoring social distancing guidelines for a beer tasting.
The photo was taken in February 2019, over a year before Michigan confirmed its first coronavirus cases.
The viral claim circulating on Facebook alleges the photo shows Whitmer “enjoying herself at a bar” while flouting the social distancing guidelines currently in place in Michigan. This particular post remarks, “Do as I say not as I do!”
Facebook users have shared the photo with inaccurate context, however. The photo was actually taken when Whitmer visited Lansing Brewing Company on Feb. 27, 2019, more than a year before Michigan confirmed its first COVID-19 cases.
Michigan politics reporter Jonathan Oosting tweeted the photo. (RELATED: Does This Photo Show Joe Biden And Michigan Gov Gretchen Whitmer Violating Social Distancing Guidelines?)
— Jonathan Oosting (@jonathanoosting) February 27, 2019
“Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer tasting beers at @LansingBrews,” Oosting tweeted. “They’re expected to name her favorite after her in some fashion.”
Lansing Brewing Company released a beer named after Whitmer in late May 2019. The brewery has previously dedicated beers to Michigan politicians, including former Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder and former Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero, according to the Lansing State Journal.
A spokesperson for the brewery confirmed to the Daily Caller via phone that Whitmer visited for a tasting in February 2019. The spokesperson also said that Lansing Brewing Company is not currently serving patrons at the tables inside the brewery.
Michigan’s “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order remains in effect, but some restrictions have been relaxed, such as allowing social gatherings of up to 10 people and allowing restaurants and shops to open in some areas.