Alcohol Wholesalers Like Lawsuits When They Suit Them

Twofaced H.R. 5034 would “take the federal judge out of making alcohol laws…the only people who should be concerned about this legislation are
the people who had planned to go to federal court and sue."

Paul Pisano,Vice President, Industry Affairs and Counsel at National Beer Wholesalers Association, in the Naples News, April 27, 2010.

Paul Pisano was on the inside when the H.R. 5034, the bill that would lead to the end of direct shipping of wine in several states, severely harm wineries and kill consumer access to wine, was written. He tells us he's concerned with all these lawsuits that challenge state regulations on alcohol and that they need to be stopped so that the regulation of alcohol can be left where it should be, in the hands of state legislators and not in the hands of Judges.

But where was Paul Pisano when Southern Wine and Spirits, a wholesaler, challenged Texas law in federal court? Where was his outcry for local control then? Where was is call for a need to stop lawsuits in Federal court when Southern Wine & Spirits sued the state of Texas (Southern Wine & Spirits v. Steen, 2007) because they couldn't get a wholesaler license because Texas law prohibited non-residents from immediately getting such a license?

Of course he was silent. That's what two-faced hypocrites are when they like something that helps them, even though they don't like the same thing when it doesn't help them.

4 Responses

  1. Joseph Filippi - April 28, 2010

    I really don’t think this is such a big deal as these States state. They still have the right to make their own alcohol laws, the excise tax rates that must be charged and so on. Some states are a great pain in the rear to deal with as far as records etc. This is not smart on their part. This sabre rattling is simply causing something right now. Every winery that has the means is loading up trucks right now getting them on the road before these laws go into effect if at all. This hurts these same states that are claiming that they are getting hurt. They are slitting their own wrists. We’ve seen this with imports before. France vs USA , more or increased tariff rates back years ago. The USA was flooded with French exports because they immediately upon a threat loaded the containers and got them off to America. We caused our own blight. Go figure.

  2. Randy - April 29, 2010

    Why don’t the states do what 5 of the other states are doing… Force DTC wineries to charge their specific states sales tax whenever wine is shipped into the state, we (wineries) bookkeep it and then send the tax to that State Board of Equalization department every quarter or annually. I’m under the premise that it’s all about money and if so, we’ll collect the tax and get it to the states. This is a bookkeeping nightmare for a small guy, but at least the states get their tax rev and we can still cut out the greedy, self-serving wholesalers Association. This way the congressfolk can bring in more tax to their region which should quiet down the naysayers. This way the wine coming into the state is also monitored to like protect the kids or something, right?

  3. Dennis - April 30, 2010

    Or how InBevAB is suing Illinois using Granholm as the key decision reference in their lawsuit.

  4. Tom Wark - April 30, 2010

    Bingo. And as you might imagine, InBevAB does not support H.R. 5034.

Leave a Reply