Pro-Trump former governor accused of lying about meal while encouraging people to go back to restaurants

But Walker defended the old picture claiming that they didn’t take one during the dinner 

Mayank Aggarwal
Monday 28 December 2020 07:45 GMT
File image: Scott Walker asked people to support small businesses hurting due to the pandemic  
File image: Scott Walker asked people to support small businesses hurting due to the pandemic   (Reuters)

Former Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker has been accused of lying about his dinner after he shared more than a year-old photo of eating out while trying to encourage people to go back to restaurants to support small businesses.

During the weekend, Mr Walker shared a picture of him sitting at a restaurant table and tweeted: “Great pizza tonight at San Giorgio Pizzeria Napoletana. We have to support our local restaurants and small businesses!”

With more than 18.64 million Covid-19 cases including over 328,000 deaths, the US has the highest number of coronavirus cases in the world. The pandemic has impacted many small businesses, including restaurants, and people are encouraging each other to support such places to keep them afloat.

But within hours of Mr Walker’s tweet, a Twitter user, Erik Halvorsen, pointed out that the picture was from 2019. Subsequently, other users on the social media platform joined in.

Matthew Yglesias, a senior fellow with the Niskanen Center, tweeted: “Scott Walker apparently pretending to be out and about doing indoor dining based on fake photos. Here he's exhorting people to support local restaurants by being like him and going out for pizza, but you can tell by the low resolution on the photo that it's been cropped and zoomed.”

“And that's because the pizza is from a photo he took about 14 months ago at his wife's birthday. At any rate, San Giorgio is open for curbside pickup and I would strongly encourage anyone with the financial means to support their local restaurants by ordering takeout or delivery as a pandemic-safe way to get food and keep the economy moving,” Mr Yglesias tweeted.

Another Twitter user Randy Bryce said: “Thankful [Scott Walker] isn’t governing during a pandemic by encouraging others to go out while he safely hides at home. He’s as dishonest now as when he attacked Wisconsin workers. A minister’s son. Dad must be proud.”

However, following the controversy, Mr Walker, who is considered a pro-trump Republican leader, defended the use of an old picture.

“My family and I went to [San Giorgio Pizzeria Napoletana] last night. Great food. I used an old photo since we didn't take one last night. I'm glad this tweet has generated so much attention. I hope people support Gino and his team at [San Giorgio Pizzeria Napoletana]. Small business is hurting, and they need our support,” he tweeted.

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