Diners eat lunch outside at Settebello Pizzeria Napoletana on Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020, in Pasadena, Calif. A surge of COVID-19 cases led to a three-week end to outdoor dining and California’s first stay-home order since the pandemic began to spread across the state in March. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
UPDATED 2:07 PM PT – Wednesday, December 16, 2020
The Trump family has been condemning “blanket lockdowns,” in response to a heated exchange between a Southern California restaurant owner and health inspectors. On Tuesday, Ivanka and Donald Trump Jr. reacted to a video that has since gone viral.
“I followed the rules, I continue to follow the rules and you guys still — time after time — are giving me citations, telling me I have to close my business,” said restaurant owner Anton Van Happen.
In a tweet Tuesday morning, Donald Jr. slammed politicians and the mainstream media for supporting lockdowns that are “actively destroying lives.” He noted, “they don’t care because their paychecks aren’t on the line.”
Shortly after, Ivanka echoed her older brother’s sentiments in her own tweet.
In the viral video, Van Happen, the owner of the restaurant Nick the Greek in Ventura, was seen confronting health officials who had issued him a citation for violating the state’s stay-at home order. This order forced restaurants to switch from dine-in services to take-out and delivery only.
“What about my employees, are you going to pay my rent?” Van Happen could be heard asking.
Van Happen helped lead the push to continue outdoor dining for restaurants in the area. Fellow restaurant owners said they made the decision to continue outdoor dining because there’s “no science” behind the ban. Meanwhile, a bipartisan group of California lawmakers have called on Gov. Gavin Newsom (D-Calif.) to allow restaurants to reopen their doors.