The other liquor privatization effort is funded by Bellevue-based Odom Corporation (which is also a member of the American Beverage Association – see above) and Young’s Markets, headquartered in Orange, California. Both are privately held companies. Their measure, Initiative 1105, would likewise close down state liquor stores, but it is written to allow smaller retailers to profit from privatization. It is still, however, the same fundamentally flawed idea.
The whole reason we have a Liquor Control Board and publicly controlled liquor stores is so that we can limit the availability of hard spirits. The argument that the current system is outdated because it was set up decades ago is ridiculous. The initiative process predates Prohibition; should we get rid of it as well, just because it’s old? No! We’re one of the few states that has had the good sense to recognize that we have a public interest in controlling and regulating beverages containing a high volume of alcohol.
The only reason Odom Corporation, Young’s Markets, and their allies want to abolish public liquor stores is so they can make more money. That is not a compelling argument for changing public policy.