Bar Will Shut Down to Avoid Serving Donald Trump’s Supporters During RNC

A Milwaukee bar owner plans to temporarily shutter his establishment during the Republican National Convention (RNC) this summer to avoid serving supporters of former President Donald Trump.

The RNC will be held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, from July 15 to 18. After Trump reached the 1,215 delegates required to clinch the GOP presidential nomination on Tuesday, delegates are expected to formally select the former president as the Republican Party’s nominee during the convention.

The Mothership, a cocktail bar on Logan Avenue in the Bay View neighborhood of Milwaukee, describes itself as a “stupid idiot booze dungeon” on Facebook and frequently shares colorful posts on the social media platform. While the convention is estimated to draw roughly 50,000 visitors to the city, the bar’s owner and operator Ricky Ramirez wants nothing to do with the crowd.

In an interview with Rolling Stone published on Saturday, Ramirez said he grew up with a “kind of chip on my shoulder” regarding discrimination as the child of first-generation immigrants and living in a city that still deals with segregation. As many Republicans have embraced what critics decry as racist, anti-immigration rhetoric Ramirez told the outlet that “if there’s an influx of those kinds of people, then I’d rather just be closed.”

“I don’t f****** care who comes into my bar on the norm, but it’s such a heightened event where people are very proudly going to be confirming that Donald Trump’s the nominee for the party again,” he said.

Newsweek reached out on Saturday to The Mothership’s Facebook page and email for comment.

In a Facebook post on Wednesday, The Mothership first announced the plans to close during the week of the RNC, which sparked a mix of condemnation and praise in response.

The bar’s social media announcement read in part: “I’m not trying to get involved with or actively take money or rent the space out to that tomfoolery HOWEVER if anyone wants bar for private event wedding reception wet tshirt contest idk whatever private people wanna party about do hit up our dms for free to dirt cheap prices we’ll f****** do anything for money except be a part of THAT s*** show.”

Ramirez told local newspaper the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that he would make the same call to close his bar if the Democratic National Convention was being held in the city.

“The No. 1 reason is we are a bar and alcohol and politics don’t mix,” Ramirez told the outlet in an email. “It’s a rule in any bar no matter what kind of bar it is, so that’s the simple gist of it.

“We want to represent the entire city and include all, especially our friends who don’t have equal access to this part of city due to the segregation caused by the history of this city. Both parties do little to mitigate the ongoing issues, so screw them both. We don’t want to throw a party for either side because they both suck (in my eyes, the RNC a lot more).”

Bar to Close During RNC
Supporters of presumed 2024 GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump hold up signs during a campaign event on November 11, 2023. During the RNC in July, a Milwaukee bar plans to close.

Scott Eisen/Getty

Newsweek also reached out via email to Trump’s representatives for comment.

While some critics of the decision have argued that it isn’t fair to The Mothership’s staff, Ramirez said that it was a group decision and the employees will be paid during the closure.

Ramirez, in the Rolling Stone interview, referred to the backlash the bar is facing as his “Bud Light moment,” which is a reference to the conservative boycott of the popular beer brand over a social media collaboration with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.

Ramirez told the outlet that he doesn’t care about the backlash, saying: “I think a lot of people that have jumped down our throats are people that have never been to our bar.”