- The Washington Times - Tuesday, December 10, 2019

A bar in Hershey, Pennsylvania, canceled an event featuring several Republican congressional candidates that was set to happen ahead of President Trump visiting town Tuesday.

Anthony Pasquini, general manager of Rotunda Brew Pub, confirmed it canceled the “America First Xmas Bash” scheduled to take place Monday, The York Dispatch reported.

Rotunda’s owners decided to call off the event after receiving complaints from locals about Enrique Tarrio, the chairman and leader of the controversial Proud Boys group who was scheduled to speak, The Dispatch reported.

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“It’s not so much as they wanted to cancel me as they wanted the phone calls to stop,” Mr. Tarrio told The Washington Times on Tuesday. “It’s cancel culture,” he added.

The event was ultimately moved to a different location and attended by roughly 50 people, Mr. Tarrio told The Times.

“We had a great time,” he added.

Rotunda did not immediately respond to an inquiry from The Times.

Announced Thursday, the party was organized by the campaign for Hershey resident Bobby Jeffries, a fellow Republican congressional candidate, as well as the Demand Free Speech group and Rally with Roger, an organization established in support of recently convicted former Trump adviser Roger Stone.

Among the guests scheduled to speak at the event were Mr. Tarrio and Danielle Stella, a fellow Republican congressional candidate who was recently banned from Twitter after tweeting about hanging Rep. Ilhan Omar, Minnesota Democrat.

Others scheduled to speak at the event were Mr. Jeffries, California congressional candidate DeAnna Lorraine, Virginia congressional candidate Jason Roberge, Demand Free Speech CEO Adrienna DiCioccio and media personalities Chris Cella and Kim Coulter, according to the event’s website.

Mr. Pasquini said Rotunda found the ideologies of some of the speakers to be especially troublesome, The Dispatch reported.

The Proud Boys was established in 2016 by Vice Media co-founder Gavin McInnes and composed of self-described “Western chauvinists.” Mr. Tarrio succeeded Mr. McInnes as the group’s leader in late 2018, and last month he launched his campaign for Florida’s 27th Congressional District.

The Southern Poverty Law Center has labeled the Proud Boys an extremist group, which prompted Mr. McInnes to sue the watchdog earlier this year for defamation and tortious interference. Mr. Tarrio has rejected the label as well.

Mr. Trump is set to hold a reelection campaign rally Tuesday evening at the Giant Center in Hershey, a hockey arena roughly 20 miles east of the state capital.

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