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  1. #1
    Connoisseur
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    Transporting liquor across state lines.

    Out of curiosity I have been doing a little research on whether it is illegal to buy liquor in one state and take it to another state. (ie. when I buy alcohol in Ga and bring it back to SC.) So far I have confirmed that in SC, NC, VA, PA, NH, MA, and TN it is illegal to purchase any amount in another state and bring it into these states by any means even for personal use. (ie. TN: misdeamenor if under 3 gallons; felony if over 3). Not sure of other states. It appears that it is seldom enforced unless you are pulled for another reason, etc. I got interested when I was returning from GA with about 3 cases and got pulled for speeding in North Augusta, SC. The state trouper asked about the whiskey as it was on the seat next to me. I explained that I was a collector and he seemed satisfied. But I would have been hard pressed to say I bought it in SC when some of it had old GA tax stamps on it. (MORAL: Don't speed with liquor!)

    Just curious what your thoughts on this are.

  2. #2
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    Re: Transporting liquor across state lines.

    Quote Originally Posted by Enoch View Post
    Just curious what your thoughts on this are.
    My thoughts are:

    • Better to keep it hidden in the trunk - out of sight, out of mind.
    • Pay better attention to speed traps.
    Personally, I think these laws reek of prohibitionism, although it's probably more related to tax revenue. In either case, I don't like it.
    Mark Edwards - Proof of Sanity Forged Upon Request

  3. #3
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    Re: Transporting liquor across state lines.

    Quote Originally Posted by MarkEdwards View Post
    My thoughts are:
    • Better to keep it hidden in the trunk - out of sight, out of mind.
    • Pay better attention to speed traps.
    Personally, I think these laws reek of prohibitionism, although it's probably more related to tax revenue. In either case, I don't like it.
    One article I read had to do with Mass and NH. When MA passed a new tax on alcohol, NH store owners put up billboards in MA suggesting they drive across the border to get cheaper alcohol. MA started looking for ways to stop it. And yes, I do not speed anymore
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Enoch; 12-25-2011 at 08:28.

  4. #4
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    Livonia, MI
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    Re: Transporting liquor across state lines.

    At the border, you can buy at the duty free and import into MI (or US) by paying the tax of about $3/bottle.

    This is not too good for bourbon but for Scotch and Canadian it is an excellent buy if you get a larger quantity to cover the tunnel fees.

    In the past I've done this with friends that would get a case at a time.

    Make sure you declare and are prepared to have your car thoroughly searched including by dogs.

    It's all about collecting the alcohol tax.

  5. #5
    Connoisseur
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    Re: Transporting liquor across state lines.

    "Six of these states -- Florida, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Tennessee and Utah -- actually make it a felony..."

    It's funny I could not find any states that care if you purchase and take out of state....

  6. #6
    Sounds like a clear violation of the commerce clause to me.

  7. #7
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    Manheim, PA 17545
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    Re: Transporting liquor across state lines.

    Yep, not only do you HAVE to buy your whiskey from a "State Store" in Pennsylvania, you're not allowed to import any either. I often wonder if that is a violation of some right or other law and could be taken off the books.
    If you have anything Michter's or Pennco and would like to sell it or share it with me, please let me know.

  8. #8
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    Re: Transporting liquor across state lines.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hershmeister View Post
    Sounds like a clear violation of the commerce clause to me.
    How so?....................
    John B

    "Drinking when we are not thirsty and making love at all seasons… that is all there is to distinguish us from other animals."

  9. #9
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    Northwest of Peoria
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    Re: Transporting liquor across state lines.

    Quote Originally Posted by jburlowski View Post
    How so?....................
    Originally the commerce clause was set up to give the federal government the power to ensure that commerce across state lines was free IE that Illinois did not slap an excise tax on goods coming from Iowa. They were concerned trade wars between and among the states might spring up in the absence of federal authority to "regulate' such commerce.

    I think what he means is that for one state to make the act of bringing in goods from another state illegal, constitutes something akin to the trade wars the founders sought to prevent. (forget about alcohol for a minute and imagine we are talking about beef or wheat)
    Last edited by ILLfarmboy; 12-25-2011 at 22:10.

  10. #10
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    Re: Transporting liquor across state lines.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hershmeister View Post
    Sounds like a clear violation of the commerce clause to me.
    From Article I, Section 8:


    The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States; but all duties, imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

    [snip]

    To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states, and with the Indian tribes;

    [big snip]

    Amendment XXI:

    Section 1.

    The eighteenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed.

    Section 2.

    The transportation or importation into any state, territory, or possession of the United States for delivery or use therein of intoxicating liquors, in violation of the laws thereof, is hereby prohibited.

    Section 3.

    This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by conventions in the several states, as provided in the Constitution, within seven years from the date of the submission hereof to the states by the Congress.

    Note that Section 2 clearly carves out an exception to the so-called "commerce clause". That exception was deemed necessary in order to secure ratification -- or at least to provide political cover for some of its advocates. It also has the curious effect of making a violation of state law a federal crime. I don't know whether any Federal legislation has ever established penalties, however.
    Yours truly,
    Dave Morefield

    Dog Lover, Euphonium Player, Campfire Guitarist, Marksman,

 

 

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