Supreme Court’s Decision To Free The Grapes

Lynne Kiesling

Today the Supreme Court struck down the interstate wine shipment bans in several U.S. states. SCOTUSblog has the links to the decision documents. I’ve posted frequently here on the topic. According to this Wired story,

By a 5-4 vote, the high court ruled that the bans involving out-of-state wineries unconstitutionally discriminated against interstate commerce. Such laws have been adopted in 23 states while the other 27 states allow direct wine sales, industry officials said. …

Justice Anthony Kennedy said for the court majority that the laws at issue from Michigan and New York were designed to grant in-state wineries a competitive advantage over wineries located in other states.

“We hold that the laws in both states discriminate against interstate commerce in violation of the Commerce Clause (of the U.S. Constitution) and that the discrimination is neither authorized nor permitted by the 21st Amendment,” Kennedy concluded. …
Joining Kennedy in the majority opinion were Justices Antonin Scalia, David Souter, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer.

Chief Justice William Rehnquist and Justices John Paul Stevens, Sandra Day O’Connor and Clarence Thomas dissented.

Thomas wrote that the court majority suggested it believed the decision would enhance consumer welfare and serve the nation well. He said the 21st Amendment and a 1913 federal law “took those policy choices away from judges and returned them to the states.”

I haven’t read the decision yet, but I can’t say that I understand Thomas’s logic.

See also Todd Zywicki’s post at Volokh, and the links therein.


One thought on “Supreme Court’s Decision To Free The Grapes

  1. Kosher wine

    We pride ourselves in choosing excellent quality wines and we will taste at least 7 wines during each evening

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