Gay club owner facing boycott after announcing Republican run for Congress

Mauro Garza is running for Congress as a Republican

A gay club in San Antonio, Texas is facing a boycott after its Trump-supporting owner announced a run for Congress as a Republican.

Mauro Garza, the Republican owner of the Pegasus gay nightclub, has announced a 2020 challenge to Democratic lawmaker Joaquin Castro, a strong supporter of LGBT+ rights.

San Antonio activist group “Protest the Peg” is calling on the local LGBT+ community to boycott the club, saying: “We must stand together to ensure that political attacks on our communities are denounced.

“We must work in unison to curtail monetary support of anti-LGBTQIA+ movements. Every time we spend our hard-earned dollars at Pegasus Nightclub, we are paying to support our oppression.

“For this reason, we are making a nationwide call to anyone in our communities that are planning to visit the city of San Antonio to boycott the Pegasus.”

Republican gay club owner challenged over beliefs

The group noted that Garza has previously stated his support for Donald Trump’s ban on transgender people serving in the military, and has praised anti-LGBT Republican Ted Cruz.

The club regularly books major drag performers, with RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars contestant Kennedy Davenport set to perform at the venue.

Mauro Garza is running for Congress as a Republican

Mauro Garza is running for Congress as a Republican

The activists added: “We understand there are many artists who rely on the entertainment industry as their source of income. We are fully aware of the limits systematic oppression can impose on us to secure employment and meet our needs.

“We recognise that our spaces are the safest for LGBTQIA+ talent to work. However, the LGBTQIA+ entertainment industry provides different platforms that reach large audiences.

“We ask that you use those platforms responsibly and refrain from contracting talent to attend or perform at Pegasus Nightclub.

“We will continue the boycott and protests as long as Mr Garza sustains his support for politics and rhetoric that incite discrimination and violence against us and other vulnerable communities.”

Mauro Garza says he wants ‘conservative reform for LGBT+ community’

Garza’s campaign website makes no mention of his ownership of the nightclub, describing himself as an “entrepreneur.”

He says: “I advocate for Marriage Equality, because the government has no right to be in our bedrooms.

“I advocate for Tax Equality for Domestic Partner Benefits. I will advocate Conservative Reform for the LGBT+ Community.”

Castro took 80 percent of the vote in the heavily-Democratic 20th district in both 2016 and 2018, with no Republican on the ballot paper.