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Saturday, March 11, 2017

Grapes of wrath: wine bar owners sue Trump over unfair competition

Khalid Pitts and Diane Gross file a lawsuit against Trump and Old Post Office hotel, asking Trump to resign or close establishment while in office

Diane Gross and Khalid Pitts, owners of the Cork Wine Bar, at a press conference on Thursday in Washington DC. Photograph: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

I'm sure they have a rock solid case. 

Because every time a Wendy's opens across the street from a McDonalds a lawsuit takes place. 


How do you compete with a restaurant at Donald Trump’s hotel down the road from the White House? Two Washington restaurateurs argue you can’t and have sued him over it. 

The plaintiffs are Khalid Pitts and Diane Gross, who own Cork Wine Bar and Cork Market & Tasting Room. 

They allege unfair competition under local law and have filed a lawsuit against Trump personally and the Trump Old Post Office LLC, which operates the hotel. 

They aren’t seeking monetary damages but are asking Trump to remedy the unfair competition by resigning, divesting from the hotel or closing it while he’s president. Pitts and Gross are represented by business and government watchdog [Democrat] attorneys who say they are working for free.

I'm sure Trump is shaking in his boots.

Alan Garten, lead attorney for the Trump Organization, dismissed the lawsuit as “a wild publicity stunt completely lacking in legal merit”. Trump’s personal attorney, Michael Cohen, couldn’t immediately be reached.

Pitts is politically active, having run in 2014 as an independent for a seat on the DC council. Prior to that race, he was registered as a Democrat. He previously did work for the Service Employees International Union. Gross, a lawyer, worked from 2003 to 2005 for the former senator Barbara Mikulski, a Maryland Democrat.

Pitts said the couple’s political leanings were “irrelevant”. He said his dining, catering and events business was down since Trump took office, but he declined to give details. Cork Wine Bar has about 70 seats.

Under constitutional immunity protections, Trump cannot be sued over official acts in the Oval Office. But he can be named in lawsuits for personal actions or those involving his businesses.

Trump turned over management of his companies to his two adult sons and a senior company executive. He retains ownership of his global business empire, which includes the hotel.


If these assholes are worried about business... they just pissed of 50% of their customer base.

This is their website.

If you're a Republican perhaps you would like to drop them a line.


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