U.S. bars are offering $5 Russian vodka drinks, “impeachmint” cocktails and free drinks with every presidential tweet to draw crowds on Thursday to watch fired FBI Director James Comey's televised testimony to Congress.
Television "watch parties," typically hosted for sporting events and awards shows, are planned at homes and bars across the country for Comey’s 10 a.m. EDT appearance before the Senate Intelligence Committee.
During "the SUPER BOWL of Washington," as it was billed by the Axelrad Beer Garden in Houston, the former director will testify that U.S. President Donald Trump tried to get him to scale back the agency's investigation into Russia's alleged interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
“Join us for an early morning beer and engage in friendly debate with fellow patrons,” a post on the Axelrad Facebook page said. The bar also is serving a drink called the impeachmint.
In Washington, Shaw's Tavern was one of several bars promising to open its doors a half hour before Comey begins speaking, with a $10 “FBI” breakfast special. In this case, FBI stands not for Federal Bureau of Investigation but French toast, bacon and ice cream.
"Grab your friends, grab a drink and let’s COVFEFE!” the tavern said on Facebook, referring to a truncated Trump tweet last week with that word that left some people scratching their heads.
The Partisan bar just off the tourist-rich National Mall will offer “The Last Word” and “Drop the Bomb” cocktails and "The Patriot" breakfast sandwich.
“We’ve got two TVs in our bar and we’re going to have the audio on full blast,” said Molly Hippolitus, a spokeswoman for the bar's owners. "I’m expecting a pretty good mix, a bipartisan crowd to show up.”
The Union Pub in Washington planned to buy patrons a round of drinks every time Trump, a frequent tweeter, makes a post on Twitter during Comey's testimony.
Several bars in San Francisco will open as early as 6 a.m. PDT to allow patrons to gather for the testimony.
"It's important for us to be well informed," said bartender Darren "Buddy" Jaques at the Mix, where the TV will be tuned into the hearing.
(Reporting by Ian Simpson in Washington, Gina Cherelus in New York, Tom James in Seattle and Lisa Fernandez in California; Writing by Barbara Goldberg in New York; Editing by Colleen Jenkins and Bill Trott)