The Buzz

Update: Missouri House passes bill protecting state liquor wholesalers

Updated: 2013-05-08T22:24:12Z

By DAVE HELLING

Missouri’s House has passed a hotly-contested bill protecting the state’s liquor wholesalers in their dispute with brewers, distillers, and other producers.

For a full background report on the issues, click here.

In a statement this afternoon, liquor suppliers “blasted” the unexpected passage of the measure, which had stalled in the legislature.

“It’s not the government’s role to legislate business relationships,” said Ben Jenkins, Vice President of the Distilled Spirits Council, in a statement emailed to reporters. “If this legislation passes, wholesalers will have no incentive to meet the needs of suppliers since there will be no consequences for their actions.

UPDATE: Here’s a quote from Sue McCollum of Major Brands, a liquor wholesaler:

“The Missouri House has taken a big step today toward protecting thousands of Missouri jobs. This bill would restore the regulatory framework that has existed since Prohibition, but was weakened by a federal court.

“Now we need the Missouri Senate to take up and pass this crucial, bi-partisan piece of legislation.”

The bill now goes to the Missouri Senate, where prospects are uncertain.

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