As Trump supporters, Proud Boys, and other right-wing fringe groups flocked to DC over the weekend, Harry’s Bar at the Hotel Harrington quickly became their go-to drinking spot. On Friday night, MAGA crowds packed together with red Solo cups and cans of Truly hard seltzer on the patio, where a halibut sandwich was on special. They sang “God Bless the USA” and waved a big “Blue Lives Matter” flag in the street. Almost none of them were wearing masks.
That same night, the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration issued Harry’s a $1,000 citation for multiple violations of DC’s Covid-related restrictions, including patrons without facial coverings, patrons standing while consuming alcohol, and insufficient table spacing. The following day, on Saturday, Harry’s received a second $1,000 fine for patrons without masks and more than six people seated at a table. If the bar faces a third mask violation, its liquor license will be reviewed by the Alcoholic Beverage Control board.
In October, the city had issued two separate warnings to Harry’s for the lack of masks and insufficient table spacing after Trump retweeted a video showing maskless supporters at the bar cheering and fist-bumping police.
The dive-y pub has become a popular hangout for the younger MAGA crowd over the last few years because it offers proximity to the Trump hotel—but with much more affordable drinks. Consider: a Bud Light at the Trump hotel’s Benjamin Bar & Lounge costs $9 and most cocktails are in the $20 to $30 range.
“For us, it’s more of an after-hours place. After the Trump [hotel] closes, we’ll typically end up there if we’re going to have a late night,” Republican political consultant and commentator Harlan Hill told Washingtonian back in January. “You’ll see familiar faces: other people who do Fox, some congressmen, but it’s not as common as at the Trump.”
This story has been updated to reflect a second $1,000 fine issued on Saturday.