Walmart lawsuite versus TABC

Wal-Mart lawsuit versus TABC The Wal-Mart stores are fighting to be able to sell liquor in Texas stores. The bars that are in Austin are one of the very few places that allowed selling liquor in Texas. Wal-Mart stores have filed a federal lawsuit against the licensing board Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission. Now, people in Texas can go into 546 Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club outlets to buy beer and wine, but cannot purchase hard liquor (Kieler 1). There is a long-standing law in Texas that forbids the sale of hard liquor in Wal-Mart. In their federal lawsuit, Wal-Mart in their argument state that the law violates the Equal Protection, the Commerce Clause and Comity Clause of the United States Constitution. They want the violation to end to enjoy their rights. Wal-Mart says that Texas is irrationally banning them from selling hard liquor like they do in other states. The company argues this is so only because it is a publicly traded company. TABC says even if Wal-Mart could sell hard liquor in the state, the law only entitles it to do so in only five of its stores (Kieler 10). Owners of stores that pool permits together with their family members, however, have no limit to the number of permits.
Wal-Mart argues that the law creates arbitrary distinctions that are used to separate classes of retailers that have no rational difference in their selling or purpose for selling the commodity. Wal-Mart Company would also like to sell distilled spirits at its stores and Sam’s Club located in Texas for persons who want off-premises consumption (Kieler 6). The lawsuit states that the Texas law forbids public traded companies from owning a permit that one needs to sell alcohol. It is the package store permit. The public corporation class of retailers gets denied the opportunity to compete in the hard liquor department. The other class of retailers i.e. publicly traded hotel corporations and private corporations can compete without having the restrictions they are getting. There is no other state in America that permits private corporations to sell hard liquor (Kieler 8). Some of the publicly traded corporation but not all of them have a prohibition on retail sale of spirits.
There is also another issue of limiting the number of stores and outlets that should sell the liquor. Wal-Mart in their lawsuit takes up this as another issue. The company states in its lawsuit that TABC is unfair in letting other companies own the permit. Several small companies that are family owned to take advantage of the loophole that allows close family members have access to the business permits required in running a liquor store (Kieler 13). The real victims of the State’s ban on allowing them to sell hard liquor is the consumer according to Wal-Mart. Even if Wal-Mart were given the permission to obtain store permits to sell liquor, they would have to abandon its 543 beer and wine permits. It is according to the current law of Texas. The consumers are forced to pay extra for their hard liquor since the market is non-competitive and fair competition is not available because of the ban (Kieler 15). There should be free enterprise and fair competition in all types of retail sales. It should not matter whether the sale is that of hard liquor or any other legal commodity.
Work Cited
Kieler, Ashlee. Wal-Mart Sues Texas Over Law Banning Publicly Traded Companies From Selling Liquor. February 13, 2015 Online

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