The maskless young man stands by a DJ booth, headphones around his neck, smiling and shaking hands as a packed crowd, also without masks, shimmies to the upbeat music.

Jack Ducey, the son of Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R), posted the clip to social media in late December, at the same time his father was urging residents to stay home for the holidays and follow public health guidelines like wearing masks, the Arizona Republic reported.

Now, the video, which also shows Jack Ducey eating indoors at a restaurant with a group, has gone viral and sparked allegations that the governor’s family has failed to lead by example — a criticism Ducey himself faced over the summer when he was photographed at a backyard gathering without a mask and in proximity to others.

A spokesperson for the governor and Jack Ducey did not immediately reply to The Washington Post’s request for comment early Tuesday. Jack Ducey, who is in his early 20s, told the Republic he had made a mistake, but noted he is not a politician.

The clash comes as the governor has resisted stricter restrictions, like a statewide mask mandate, curfew or shutdown, as the virus surges across the state. While he has advised residents to avoid indoor gatherings, he has also argued that it isn’t the government’s job to monitor what happens inside people’s homes.


Superspreader events are the leading cause of coronavirus transmission in the U.S. Here’s what they entail, and why they are so dangerous. (The Washington Post)

Arizona reported 17,234 new cases on Sunday, the highest number of daily reported cases in the state since the pandemic began, according to data tracked by The Post. At least 561,542 residents have contracted the virus and 9,064 have died of covid-19 complications since late February.

The incident is the latest case of authority officials or their family sparking blowback by disregarding safety recommendations. In November, the mayor of Denver ignored his own travel advice and boarded a plane to meet his wife and daughter for Thanksgiving. Days earlier, Austin’s mayor traveled to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, to vacation after hosting his daughter’s wedding despite asking residents to stay home in a video. Both have since apologized.

Ducey’s oldest son posted the short clip to his public Instagram account on Dec. 30, the Republic reported. He has since made his Instagram account private, but the videos were shared over the weekend by Accountable Arizona, a group that recently led a failed recall effort against Ducey.

Unlike cities such as New York and Los Angeles, the state of Arizona has not implemented a ban on private indoor gatherings, so technically, the party would have been legal.

The video begins with a maskless Jack Ducey sharing a table with other attendees, also with uncovered faces, at a Benihana restaurant.

“The kid is treating himself right,” Ducey captioned the video.

The video then shows dozens of unmasked young adults swaying to music at what appears to be an indoor party.

“Solid birthday to say the least,” Ducey captioned the video showing him standing at the DJ booth, greeting other guests. No one, including Ducey, appears to be wearing a mask.

It is unclear when and where exactly the videos were taken. It is also not clear whether Ducey was an organizer of the event or a guest.

In a tweet Sunday, Accountable Arizona, the organization that later shared the video, argued Doug Ducey’s son’s actions are proof the state needs stricter guidelines that are actually enforced.

“If @dougducey’s own adult son isn’t following Ducey’s soft advice how can Ducey expect Arizonans to?” the group tweeted. “We need mitigation measures with enforcement now.”