Lockdowns in Republican areas particularly egregious; bar owner vows pub ‘will not close’

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The owner of a bar in New York, who was arrested this week for defying state lockdowns, vowed that he “will not close” his business down.

Danny Presti, the co-owner of Mac’s Public House in Staten Island, announced on Fox News that his “diplomatic approach” with Democrat leaders in the state has fallen on deaf ears and no progress has been made in addressing the concerns of business owners suffering under strict coronavirus orders.

Presti, who was arrested this week for “trespassing” on his own property and allegedly violating Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s order banning indoor dining, announced Friday on “Tucker Carlson Tonight” that he will be keeping his business open.

Accompanied by his attorney Lou Gelormino, Presti explained that the bar had been closed for a few days due to the incident earlier this week when the New York City Sheriff’s Department raided the business. The bar, which Presti co-owns with business partner Keith McAlarney, had its liquor license revoked by the state and was issued thousands of dollars in fines.

(Source: Fox News)

“We’ve pleaded with the mayor and the governor and the sheriff to help work with us and to get small businesses open, or to assist us in some way,” Presti said from inside of the pub.

“Unfortunately, that hasn’t happened. So the timeline has ended, and we’re here to tell you that Mac’s Public House is officially open and we will not close,” he added.

His attorney then explained that the owners had been advised “of the legal ramifications of their decisions” and that he was “proud” to support them.

Fox News host Tucker Carlson argued that New York’s lockdown rules were “obviously political” as they appeared to only apply to “the Republican voting parts of Staten Island.”

“You could walk two blocks from the bar, Mac’s Public House, and eat indoors without any objections from the state health department,” Carlson said.

He told viewers later that “every small business owner, every single one, who has come on this show to explain what’s happening under corona law has been harassed by the state they live in, in some cases, arrested. In a number of cases, arrested.

“This cannot go on, it’s so obviously political, it so clearly divorced from science,” he added, promising to monitor the ongoing events.

Presti had told “Fox & Friends” that he would not stop fighting to save his business, but added that “we are losing faith, and kind of lost faith, in the ability for our local and city governments to help us.”

The governor had no empathy for the bar’s owners after it was shut down and Presti arrested.

“This owner is learning that actions have consequences,” Cuomo said Wednesday in a statement through his spokesman, Jack Sterne. “Breaking the law and putting your neighbors’ lives at risk during a global pandemic to make a political statement is simply unacceptable.”

Angry local supporters, who protested the closure of the establishment, gathered outside the bar to demonstrate and local politicians also voiced their frustration, questioning the measures taken against the business owner.

“This is atrocious, this man was arrested for trying to earn a living and pay his taxes. That is insanity,” Leticia Remauro, candidate for Staten Island Borough President, told WABC.

The business owners’ attorney said he was issued four summonses “just for representing my client” and authorities gave four employees of the bar over $5,000 in penalties as well.

Bans on indoor dining in California have led to open rebukes of Democrat leaders. Celebrity chef Andrew Gruel slammed the “haters” attacking him for keeping his Huntington Beach restaurant open and called out Gov. Gavin Newsom for the strict orders.

Newsom and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti were slammed by another restaurant owner who tearfully exposed the hypocrisy of coronavirus orders that are draining the life out of her business.

The debate over the double standards in banning restaurant dining while “big box” stores remain open led to an explosive on-air argument on CNBC Friday.

CNBC’s on-air editor Rick Santelli went off on anchor Andrew Ross Sorkin about the ongoing coronavirus lockdowns as he argued about hypocritical restrictions that seem to unfairly target some businesses.

“It’s not science!” Santelli argued when Sorkin insisted the restaurant lockdowns are necessary. “Five hundred people in a Lowe’s aren’t any safer than 150 people in a restaurant that holds 600. I don’t believe it! Sorry, I don’t believe it, and I live in an area where there’s a lot of restaurants that have fought back and they don’t have any problems. And they’re open!”

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Frieda Powers

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