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New York Cracks Down on Restaurant That Hosted GOP Party, Suspends Liquor License

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A New York City restaurant that hosted a Christmas party for a group of Republicans last month has had its liquor license suspended following an investigation by the state.

Il Bacco Ristorante in the Little Neck neighborhood of Queens hosted a Christmas party for the Whitestone Republican Club on Dec. 9, according to the New York Post.

Video from the party showed some patrons listening to music, dancing and not wearing masks.

One specific clip from the party drew the ire of critics online, who were upset by some partygoers dancing without face coverings.

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An attendee from the party later tested positive for the coronavirus, but it isn’t clear where the man contracted the virus. The Whitestone Republican Club Facebook page said Thursday that the man could have gotten the infection anywhere.

We have been made aware that one attendee from our holiday party has tested covid positive. We wish the best to Jim…

Posted by Whitestone Republican Club on Thursday, December 31, 2020

“We have been made aware that one attendee from our holiday party has tested covid positive,” the group wrote. “Whether he contracted the virus at our event, his club’s holiday party held a few days prior, or in the normal course of life will likely never be known.”

Do you think the state's targeting of the restaurant is politically motivated?

The group had earlier issued a scathing statement that went after the establishment media and New York’s Democratic leaders for putting the spotlight on their Christmas party.

“So apparently the media is freaking out because we dared to celebrate the holidays in a perfectly ordinary and unremarkable way — with a gathering of friends and family. We’re now getting calls from the New York Times, Gothamist, the Washington Post and other outlets asking for our comments. On a holiday party. Let that sink in,” the Republicans wrote.

“Our idiot mayor and even King Cuomo himself have commented on it, which is just absolutely hilarious for so many reasons. The fact that the two most powerful people in the state are talking about our little party speaks volumes about their priorities, as well as how hypersensitive they are to even the slightest threat to the dictatorial authority they crave,” the group added.

“Yes, we held a holiday party. A good time was had by all. We abided by all precautions. But we are not the mask police, nor are we the social distancing police.

“Adults have the absolute right to make their own decisions, and clearly many chose to interact like normal humans and not paranoid zombies in hazmat suits. This is for some reason controversial to the people who believe it’s their job to tell us all what to do.”

So apparently the media is freaking out because we dared to celebrate the holidays in a perfectly ordinary and…

Posted by Whitestone Republican Club on Tuesday, December 22, 2020

A representative for New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio vowed punishment last week after viewing the video, according to the New York Daily News.

“COVID kills and they should get a grip on reality. The investigation is ongoing in conjunction with the [State Liquor Authority], and there will be fines for this incident,” de Blasio press secretary Bill Neidhardt said.

According to the Post, the SLA came down hard on Il Bacco Ristorante: The establishment had its liquor license suspended on Thursday.

“During a follow-up inspection, investigators found flagrant violations of indoor dining regulations and existing health safety and Alcoholic Beverage Control laws, while verifying the maskless party depicted in the video did in fact occur,” the state liquor agency said in a statement.

“This summary suspension should send a strong message that we have zero tolerance for establishments that put New Yorkers’ health at risk,” the statement added.

The SLA did not say when or if the restaurant would get its license to serve drinks back.

According to the Daily News, the Whitestone Republican Club could also face fines for the Christmas party.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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