News & Politics

LOCK HER UP: Mich. Pizzeria Owner Who Went to Jail for COVID Violations Wants Gov. Whitmer to Suffer the Same Fate

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan COO Tricia Foster at the Landshark restaurant in East Lansing, Michigan. (Facebook)

Oops I Did it Again

Just one week after updating Michigan’s COVID protocols, embattled Governor Gretchen Whitmer was caught breaking it, boozing inside a restaurant with more than six people. It’s not her first transgression.

Michigan was hit hard by COVID despite draconian lockdown orders. The new law, signed by Big Gretch, updated on May 15, states, in part, “Gatherings are prohibited at food service establishments, whether indoor or outdoor, unless: Consumption of food or beverages is permitted only in a designated dining area where patrons are seated, groups of patrons are separated by at least 6 feet, no more than 6 patrons are seated together (at a table, booth, or group of fixed seats), and groups of patrons do not intermingle.”

As per a photo posted, then removed, from Facebook, “Stretchin'” Gretchen had at least 12 people intermingling at her table.

Whitmer apologized for breaking her seven-day-old law and suggested that she and her friends just got caught up in the hoopla.

“Throughout the pandemic, I’ve been committed to following public health protocols. Yesterday, I went with friends to a local restaurant. As more people arrived, the tables were pushed together,” Whitmer said. “Because we were all vaccinated, we didn’t stop to think about it. In retrospect, I should have thought about it,” she added. “I am human. I made a mistake, and I apologize.”

Whitmer dropped the new law she broke two days later.

Committed to following public health protocols? Since when? Whitmer pleaded with Michiganders not to travel, especially to Florida, noting an uptick in COVID UK variant cases in the Sunshine State. She advised that if people did travel to Florida they would have to follow the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) travel guidelines. These were the same guidelines she broke several weeks earlier when she visited Florida.

Fed-Up Pizza Restauranteur

Michigan pizzeria owner Marlena Pavlos-Hackney, 55, was jailed and fined for violating Whitmer’s stringent COVID-19 restrictions and remaining open. The state withdrew her license to operate but Pavlos-Hackney kept Marlena’s Pizzeria and Bistro open anyway. She even posted a sign in her window that said:

Welcome. We are a Constitutionally Compliant Business. We are not infringing on anyone’s inalienable rights. By law, we do not follow any of the governor’s, mayor’s, health department’s, or other government agency orders or suggestions pertaining to social distancing or mask wearing. Your health is your responsibility.

Pavlos fled Poland in 1983, arrived in the U.S. in 1988, and became a citizen in 1992.

Pavlos was arrested on March 19 at 5:45 a.m. on a traffic stop, jailed for four days, and fined $15,000. Now she wants Whitmer jailed and fined for the most recent violation of her own coronavirus rules.

“I feel like all of us should be on the same page,” Pavlos said. “If I have to face penalties which I went through, which was … handcuffs, shackles, four nights in jail, fined $15,000 — I think she should face the same penalties. We the people, we are all equal. It does not matter that because you’re the governor, we need to forgive you,” she continued. “Treat us with dignity and respect and equally. We are all equal, we the people.”

A gofundme page for Pavlos’ legal bills has thus far raised over $322,000.

Whitmer was hit with an ethics complaint regarding her Florida trip (and who paid for it) but thus far no charges have been brought against her.