Big Game? In Rogers Park They Fill the Bar for Mueller Testimony

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By Lucia Lamagna and Numair Umrani

While most bars draw special crowds for big sporting events, Rogers Park’s R Public House was host Wednesday to an early-morning gathering to watch the Special Counsel Robert Mueller testify before Congress about Russian interference with the 2016 presidential election. 

The bar, at 1508 W. Jarvis, just off the Red Line stop, opened at 7:30 a.m., more than seven hours earlier than normal. By 9:30, about 15 people were there to witness the event in a public space rather than their homes. 

“R Public House is one of the places in Rogers Park that I think is more open to, you know, helping people participate in political events,” said Heather Cramond, 41. 

Cramond was there with her friend, Chris Bell, who found out about the event through the bar owners. Both she and Bell said they enjoyed watching the testimony in public, with other people. 

“It’s nice to see other people in the neighborhood engaged,” Cramond said. “A lot of times, you know, you’re reading the news or watching it and you feel like you’re the only person that cares about something.” 

Rogers Park is a neighborhood known for engaging the community in political issues, she said. 

“Everyone here is very vocal,” Cramond said. “It’s kind of like watching a sporting event where you kind of want to throw something at the TV.”

Debra, 50, who declined to give her last name, arrived at R Public House at 8:30 a.m.. She echoed Cramond’s sentiments, and said the community is invested in the workings of the government.

“I think we’re a very civic-minded community, we’re interested in the government and how it’s working, and how it’s working for the people,” she said.

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