KILGORE, Texas (KETK) – After Gov. Greg Abbott closed down bars for a second time due to rising COVID-19 cases, many in East Texas are seen rallying behind businesses they want to see open full-time.
Outlaws Bar and The Electric Cowboy, both in Longview, defied Gov. Abbott’s orders to close causing the TABC to suspend their licenses for 30 days.
“My next step is to fight them, I’m not just going to lay down and take this. Governor Abbott has got everybody in Texas thinking that we have this dirty little bar where COVID is hiding and that’s not true at all. I have posted a Facebook post inviting the Governor Abbott to come to my bar, check it out. TABC has been there five times since I reopened and they have not found one thing that I’ve not complied with,” said Melissa Kelly, the owner of Outlaws Bar.
Outside of the “Machine Shed” in Kilgore, a peaceful protest took place Sunday evening asking for the Governor to reconsider the closure.
“I think a great amount of consideration has to go in with every action that our governor takes, I know that he is under a lot of pressure from a lot of different agencies, but he needs to understand small businesses and small venues, like this, need to make it too,” said Jenn Ford, supporter. “I hope that the governor will take a little bit more consideration and allow Texans to make decisions for themselves.”
Some of the bar owners in East Texas are being represented by a law firm in Houston with a plan to file a class act suit.