Indiana’s Libertarian Party ‘drinking-in’ to put lawmakers on tap for change

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COLUMBUS, Ind. – Indiana’s Libertarian Party helped served a cold one Sunday afternoon.

The day and location – purposeful.

The message – unequivocal.

“Every right you have on Saturday, you ought to be able to have on Sunday too,” Lucy Brenton said, a Libertarian Party candidate for U.S. Senate.

The ‘drink-in’ was a gathering to protest not only the inability of Sunday sales in Indiana but the recent move by lawmakers to quickly crack down on Ricker’s, which found a way through existing state law, to sell cold beer at two of its gas stations, including the Columbus store where Sunday’s event took place.

“We couldn’t be more excited,” Jay Ricker said, Ricker’s chairman. “And they’re all here to say the laws need to change and the legislators need to listen to their constituents.”

Sunday’s event comes a week after another campaign launch.

The Indiana Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association launched a new campaign called “Chill Indiana” promising their own push ahead of what’s expected to be perhaps one of the biggest overhauls ever targeting Indiana’s alcohol law.

“So the challenge for us, how to harness this overwhelming public support,” Scot Imus said, the group’s executive director.

A summer study committee has been tasked with reviewing and proposing recommendations to change Indiana’s alcohol code, a detailed and comprehensive  task Republican leaders expect will take at least two years.

“I can tell you the status quo in Indiana works,” Jon Sinder said, vice chair of the Indiana Association of Beverage Retailers. “Our alcoholic beverage laws are really not that archaic.”

Indiana Libertarians know their legislative power is limited, so they’re channeling a cold one, hoping it will warm the minds for change.

“They need to loosen their grip,” Rodney Benker said, the party’s vice chair. “It is time to allow fair and safe competition in the marketplace.”

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