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Several Brooklyn bars were working to accommodate residents ahead of Thursday’s night’s debate between Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders.
According to The New York Post, one bar abandoned plans to show the Brooklyn-based New York Islanders’ first playoff game in favor of the political showdown, decorating itself with American flags.
“It’s all about the debate!” said 40 Knots Bar owner Nicki Humphrey in Carroll Gardens. The bar decorated itself with American flags for the occasion.
“The liberals get a little vicious here,” said Ryan Khal, owner of Park Slope’s Pacific Island, where they were expecting about 125 people for the debate.
Park Slope’s KBH beer hall expected 200 people Thursday, both Islanders fans and debate watchers.
“A lot of people don’t have cable or the room to have people over. We like this to be their extended living room,” manager Marquis Williams said.
The bar is down the street from Barclays Center, the Islanders’ home arena, so it would be difficult for him to abandon the game completely.
“We’ll be balancing the two,” Williams added.
The 773 Lounge, traditionally a spot for New York Rangers fans, became a political spot for the night.
“A bunch of young people approached me … they’re more Bernie-centric,” owner Billy Caine said. “We’re one of the few bars in the area with TVs.”
While the Rangers were idle Thursday, Caine planned to show the Islanders game on a few of his 14 flat-screen TVs, while the debate would be hooked up to his sound system.
Whichever event viewers chose, both were treated to a show. The debate featured tense exchanges on Clinton’s speech transcripts and the minimum wage, while the Islanders came from behind to defeat the Florida Panthers 5-4, taking a 1-0 lead in their Eastern Conference Quarterfinals series.