A WAITRESS said she was fired for posting footage of Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts not wearing a mask and cuddling a baby after wiping his nose.
Server Karina Montanez, 25, was ousted on Tuesday for sharing footage of Ricketts on Election Night, posing for maskless photos and cradling an infant at DJ’s Dugout in Omaha.
Nearly 14,000 new cases emerged along with 90 Covid deaths over the past seven days in Nebraska, where almost 1,000 patients are in hospital.
“Hey, Pete, where’s your mask? Where’s your mask, Pete?” Montanez said in the Snapchat video, which went viral on Twitter. “What are you doing, Pete? We’re in a pandemic, Pete.”
In the tweet, she wrote "bald headed ricketts in the building y'all!" and revealed that she had been fired for posting it.
The clip prompted a backlash from critics who blasted Ricketts for refusing to issue a mask mandate in the hard-hit state, where Covid-19 cases are surging.
This week, Montanez, a single mother with fibromyalgia, was fired for violating the company’s social media and cellphone policy, reports said.
During the 17-second video she posted from November 3, a maskless Ricketts can be seen talking and laughing with around 10 people.
Only one of them seems to be wearing a mask at the Bellevue eatery.
The news comes after a California Governor Gavin Newsom was also pictured flouting his coronavirus guidelines with 10 other "cackling" partygoers at an advisor's 50th birthday bash.
The NV governor was enjoying an election-night party for state Republican Senator-elect Rita Sanders, per Lincoln Journal Star.He could be seen holding a baby in the video.
Montanez told The Washington Post she felt obligated to film Ricketts failing to socially distance or wear a face covering and described it as a "slap in the face."
“You’re supposed to be taking care of us and you’re out here acting like a celebrity, while people are fighting for their lives and are in hospitals dying right now," the server raged.
Montanez was surprised the video went viral before Democratic Senator Megan Hunt drew more attention to it on Tuesday when she shared a link to the tweet.
Hunt also posted a photo of Ricketts that night at DJ’s where more than 20 people could be seen celebrating as the virus continued to pummel the United States.
"Pete Ricketts responded to this criticism by saying that sometimes he takes his mask off for pictures 'at the request of the other person,'" wrote Hunt. "But the video from this night doesn’t show him wearing a mask at all."
The governor’s rep Taylor Gage said Ricketts only removed his mask to eat and take a picture, KPTM reported.
"The state does not require people to wear masks when seated in bars or restaurants," Gage told the station.
Ricketts also denied flouting the CDC guidelines at a press briefing on Tuesday, according to the Daily Beast.
“Oftentimes when I’m taking a picture, depending on the preference of the person taking the picture, I’ll remove my mask to take the picture and put it back on when the picture ends,” he said.
Ricketts insisted a mask mandate would only "breed resistance."
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