On Friday, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was politely asked by the owner of the Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Virginia, Stephanie Wilkinson, to leave. Wilkinson told Sanders that, “the restaurant has certain standards that I feel it has to uphold, such as honesty, and compassion, and cooperation.”
Many Trump supporters have angrily come out against Stephanie Wilkinson, saying that it was inappropriate for her to take such actions, but Virginia law does not bar her from doing so. Sanders responded to the episode via Twitter, saying, “Last night I was told by the owner of Red Hen in Lexington, VA to leave because I work for
@POTUS and I politely left. Her actions say far more about her than about me. I always do my best to treat people, including those I disagree with, respectfully and will continue to do so.”
This morning though, President Trump used his official government Twitter account to take things one step further, calling a restaurant which he has never visited “filthy” and “dirty,” as you can see in his Tweet below:
The Red Hen Restaurant should focus more on cleaning its filthy canopies, doors and windows (badly needs a paint job) rather than refusing to serve a fine person like Sarah Huckabee Sanders. I always had a rule, if a restaurant is dirty on the outside, it is dirty on the inside!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 25, 2018
President Trump has never visited the Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Virginia, yet he is publicly referring to them as being “filthy” and “dirty,”. To me, this seems just a bit irresponsible of him. I decided I would check out the official Tripadvisor page for the restaurant to see if any of Trump’s claims actually have ground to stand on.
The first thing you notice when you visit this review page, is that the actual reviews for the Red Hen have been put on hold, “due to a recent event that has attracted media attention and has caused an influx of review submissions that do not describe a first-hand experience.”
The next thing you notice is that the Red Hen is the #1 ranked restaurant in all of Lexington, Virginia. Perhaps that’s why Sarah Huckabee Sanders decided on this small ma-and-pa eatery to enjoy one of her few meals in the city.
The restaurant is rated an astounding 4.5/5, based on 273 reviews:
Tripadvisor makes it very simple to search through all of the reviews for keywords, so I thought it would be interesting to search for two very important word; “dirty” and “filthy”. After all, if the Red Hen was really “dirty”, undoubtedly at least one person would have left a review saying so, right?
I must admit, I was disappointed to find that there was not a single review that mentioned either of these words, so I decided to take things in a another direction and search the reviews for the keyword “clean”. When I did so, I received four matching results, all talking about how clean the Red Hen restaurant is. They read as follows:
So there you have it. President Trump’s claim that the Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Virginia is “dirty” and “filthy”, is simply not backed up by any legitimate reviews. In fact, it’s quite the opposite, according to individuals who have eaten there. The reviews are much better than those for Trump’s own restaurants, which depict his eateries as “roach infested” places for “dirty dining”.