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Lawsuit Calls New Oklahoma Liquor Amendment Unconstitutional

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Filed last week, the Retail Liquor Association of Oklahoma says a newly approved constitutional amendment that allows full point wine and beer to be sold in grocery stores and gas stations will hurt local liquor stores. Filed last week, the Retail Liquor Association of Oklahoma says a newly approved constitutional amendment that allows full point wine and beer to be sold in grocery stores and gas stations will hurt local liquor stores.
OKLAHOMA CITY -

In the weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year's, liquor stores like Byron's Liquor Warehouse, are packed. It's a marathon holiday season.

“A lot of sweat, a lot of elbow grease but we make it through every year,” Byron’s General Manager Blake Cody said on Wednesday.

“It's quite a bit, we do several, probably about a million dollars if not more. We have a lot of product coming in and out in the month of December,” he continued.

But while they're stocking the shelves, the Retail Liquor Association of Oklahoma is stocking up for a different kind of marathon; not at the check-out-counter, but in the court room.

Filed last week, the association says a newly approved constitutional amendment that allows full point wine and beer to be sold in grocery stores and gas stations will hurt local liquor stores.

12/19/16 Related Story: Retail Liquor Association Of Oklahoma Files Lawsuit Against ABLE Commission

The lawsuit alleges the amendment is unconstitutional by "violating the Equal Protection clause" of the U.S. Constitution. They also say it "demonizes" liquor forcing small shops to "suffer discrimination," something they call "inexcusable."

In a tweet the state senator who helped spearhead the amendment, Sen. Stephanie Bice said "I think the people of Oklahoma have spoken and made their wishes known by passing SQ792." Bic was referencing the original state question Oklahomans voted on to approve the amendment in November.

Meaning for now, liquor stores will just have to wait it out until after their sales die down.

“We'll wait to see what happens with that i know they just initially filed. We're just kind of curious to see where it all goes at this point. It's in the hands of the lawyers and the judges," Cody said.

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