Virginia Restaurant Faces Backlash After Booting Out Sarah Sanders

Democratic lawmaker calls for ethics investigation of Sarah Sanders for using White House Twitter account to attack restaurant

"The increasing personal nastiness toward people who work for President Trump reflects the left's understanding that they are losing", Gingrich said in a tweet.

The Facebook page for the Red Hen in Lexington was awash with commentary, much of it bitterly criticizing owner Stephanie Wilkinson's decision Friday night to boot the White House press secretary from the premises in the rustic community nearly 200 miles southwest of Washington.

But that's exactly what happened when White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and a party of eight tried to have a meal in the farm-to-table eatery.

A restaurant in Washington, D.C., also named the Red Hen said that it has no affiliation with the restaurant in Virginia. "There are many great and innovative businesses in #VA06 that I hope you'll come back to visit", Goodlatte tweeted.

Some angry reviewers have apologized, but many continue to post their anger without realizing they're doing so on the wrong page.

The owner of the restaurant Stephanie Wilkinson explained to the local media that staff at her 26-seat restaurant, some of whom are gay, were against Trump administration's policies which Sanders defends from the White House lectern.

After reports emerged that Sanders was asked to leave the restaurant, she tweeted through her government account that Wilkinson's actions "say far more about her than about me".

Wilkinson said she told Sanders: "I explained that the restaurant has certain standards that I feel it has to uphold, such as honesty, and compassion, and cooperation".

"Tell me what you want me to do".

Shaub accused Sanders of using her public account to apply pressure on the restaurant by instigating public outrage.

Meanwhile, a Red Hen restaurant in CT seems to have removed its Facebook page altogether, while posting on its Google page that it also has no affiliation with the Virginia restaurant at the center of the controversy.

Tom Lomax, a local business owner, brought flowers to the restaurant Saturday afternoon as a show of support.

Stephen Russek, a former restaurant owner in the area, said "they had no right to do that". "They ought to be shut down".

The separation of families trying to enter the the southern border has intensified political differences and passions that were already at elevated levels during the Trump presidency.

The incident comes days after protesters assailed Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen at a Mexican restaurant in downtown Washington, just as the administration was coming under fire for its policy of separating undocumented immigrant families at the US border with Mexico. The Trumps don't get out a lot socially in Washington and Trump often dines at BLT Prime in the Trump International Hotel or at Trump properties elsewhere when he does go out.

"I'm not anxious about Sarah Huckabee Sanders, I'm anxious about millions of kids who today are seeing a different America", Gutierrez concluded.



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