As Pennsylvania residents and visitors know quite well, our state's liquor laws are outdated. Pennsylvania remains one of only two states where the government completely controls the sale of wine and spirits.
Good News: Pending legislation would allow some businesses to circumvent the state store system.
Bad News: The only people to benefit are those attending the Democratic National Convention.
That’s right, Pennsylvania liquor laws are so ridiculous, we need to suspend them when representatives of other states visit, so as to not embarrass ourselves.
A bill that passed a key Senate committee would allow those businesses to apply for a special permit to extend serving hours past the current 2 a.m. last call.
The legislation also would let them temporarily circumvent the strict and costly requirement that all wine and liquor be purchased from the State Stores, which slap products with an automatic markup and various taxes. (Much of the liquor at big events like political conventions is donated.)
This isn't a question of whether the Democratic Party should be allowed to, well, party. Rather, it's about the state denying residents the same benefits as convention attendees.
If suspending the liquor code for a few days in July makes Pennsylvania more attractive for big events, why not suspend these silly rules 365 days a year?