Democratic New York lawmakers, union leaders, and lobbyists flocked to Puerto Rico last week to participate in the annual SOMOS legislative conference. The SOMOS conference featured prominent New York Democratic politicians, including New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, New York City Mayor-elect Eric Adams, Attorney General Letitia James, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio.
Also in attendance at the political retreat were Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (N.Y.) and American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten, both of whom were spotted maskless during the conference.
In Puerto Rico, masks are required in all indoor spaces, regardless of vaccination status. However, Weingarten was seen maskless with other conference attendees who were also not wearing face coverings.
Ironically, Weingarten has previously called for all students and children to wear masks. “Universal masking in schools can save lives,” she wrote in August.
After being called out for her hypocrisy, Weingarten attempted to explain why she wasn’t wearing a mask.
“I wear a mask most of the time indoors,” Weingarten responded. “We took them off as people were having a hard time hearing us.”
“You could not be Somos or the hotel or panel w/o proof of vaccination. I had also just done a rapid Covid test & was negative,” said Weingarten, the head of the second-largest teachers union in the nation. “Frankly I think you are right. If kids are wearing masks in schools to protect themselves & others educators must wear masks inside as well. I’m sorry.”
She wrote on Twitter, “I wore my mask the rest of the conference.”
Daniela Jampel — mother of three and founding member of the grassroots, nonpartisan group Keep NYC Schools Open — told Fox News, “Ms. Weingarten’s response articulates what so many parents already know – masks are a hindrance to communication and to learning. But unlike adults, when kids in school can’t understand or hear their teacher, or can’t be understood or heard themselves, they do not have the option of simply removing their masks.”
Also at SOMOS, Chuck Schumer was caught without a mask while indoors surrounded by people in a crowded room with no social distancing being practiced. Schumer was seen maskless dancing hand-in-hand with New York City Council member Carlina Rivera (D), who was also not wearing a mask.
There is a long list of Democrats who have violated COVID-19 guidances, including: President Joe Biden, Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser, California Gov. Gavin Newsom, Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, San Francisco Mayor London Breed, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, Austin Mayor Steve Adler, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo, Biden’s special envoy on climate John Kerry, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, and Los Angeles County supervisor Sheila Kuehl.