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Bill to increase curbside alcohol limits divides House Republicans

More Republicans voted against the bill than voted for it, but strong support from Democrats lifted it to passage.

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The Alabama House of Representatives hasn’t had a whole lot of disagreement so far this session, and when it has, the votes have largely been along party lines.

But a bill to increase the amount of alcohol allowed for curbside pickup bucked that trend Thursday, passing on a narrow 46-30 vote.

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Parker Moore, R-Hartselle, would increase the amount of beer and wine that can be picked up curbside.

Under current law, passed during the height of the pandemic, customers can purchase up to 1,500 milliliters of wine curbside. This bill would increase that to 9,000 millimeters, a sixfold increase. Current law caps curbside beer sales to 288 ounces. The new law allows up to 120 12-ounce containers.

Moore told members a Senate amendment during the bill’s initial passage inadvertently capped the amount of alcohol that could be sold curbside, and that this brings it back to the same standard as delivery.

Rep. Reed Ingram, R-Montgomery, questioned why the Legislature supported the curbside pickup initially, other than the pandemic.

“The changing of the times,” Moore replied.

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The bill gained traction among Democrats, with only Rep. Juandalynn Givan, D-Birmingham, voting in opposition to the bill, although some Democrats members were either not present or abstained. 

But the bill sharply divided Republicans who appear to still be clashing over the prevalence of alcohol in the state.

In fact, without the help of Democrats, the bill wouldn’t have passed as 35 votes opposing the bill came from Republicans while only 22 Republicans supported the bill.

The bill now moves forward to the Senate for consideration.

Jacob Holmes is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can reach him at [email protected]

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