No matter which side you’re rooting for (if any) in tomorrow’s election, if you live in South Carolina or Kentucky you have another choice to make, thanks to a holdover from Prohibition days. You can either buy booze today to toast your team tomorrow or go without. Both states outlaw the selling of alcohol on Election Day, either in restaurants or at liquor stores.
Those two states are the last ones to hold on to the booze ban 80 years after Prohibition, notes Yahoo News. And the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States thinks it’s totally silly.
“The Election Day sales ban is a relic of the Prohibition era when saloons sometimes served as polling stations,” according to DISCUS Vice President Ben Jenkins. “Repealing the ban on Election Day alcohol sales would provide consumers with much-needed convenience—whether they’re celebrating election returns or mourning them.”
Five other states eased up on the ban since the last Election Day in 2008 — Delaware, Idaho, Indiana, Utah and West Virginia— and Kentucky might do so eventually*. Not South Carolina, however, which is definitely holding on to the regulations that were originally designed to curb the practice of buying votes with booze.
South Carolina’s law says: “It is unlawful to sell alcoholic liquors on Sunday except as authorized by law, on statewide election days, or during periods proclaimed by the Governor in the interest of law and order or public morals and decorum.”
So whether you’ll need that bubbly to celebrate or a few shots to curb the sting if your candidate is unsuccessful, plan ahead. Oh and yeah, tomorrow is Election Day if you’d forgotten.
*Consumerist reader James points out that in Kentucky, no booze is for sale — while the polls are open. A good point, indeed.