The 5 Dumbest Laws Restricting the Sale of Booze

R Street's Jarrett Dieterle explains five of the most absurd alcohol laws still on the books today.


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On July 1, Virginia's General Assembly voted to allow bars and restaurants to advertise happy hours, which is the latest in a series of minor victories for the movement to liberalize U.S. liquor laws. In 2019, Congress lifted the ban on distilling spirits on Native American land, and a Supreme Court decision opened the door for constitutional challenges to state laws that restrict liquor sales across state lines.

Many of these laws date to the period immediately following the appeal of the Volstead Act, says Jarrett Dieterle, who's the director of commercial freedom at the free market policy group R Street, and the editor of These changes may seem small, says Dieterle, "but they are slowly pointing us towards a better, boozy future."

To continue the progress, Dieterle has identified five dumb booze laws that lawmakers should eliminate next.

Produced, shot, and edited by Mark McDaniel.

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