Drink in the End of "Dry America" In Advance of Keep the Dollars in Dallas's Press Conference

Tomorrow Keep the Dollars in Dallas, the Kroger-led group hoping to get Dallas wet, will hold a press conference and lunch, during which it'll announce some endorsements and hand out Ray Perryman's study insisting, among myriad other things, that allowing off-premise sale of beer and wine citywide will add some $30 mil in tax revenue. That's a number attorney Andy Siegel, repping the anti- forces, has vehemently disputed.

Speaking of: Over on the Advocate's blog, in a wet-dry election round-up posted yesterday, Jeff "Not Related to Andy" Siegel directs our attention to a lengthy USA Today piece posted a couple of weeks ago headlined "Dry America's not-so-sober reality: It's shrinking fast." Much of it deals with the wetting up of historically dry East Texas, where pro-alcohol-sales advocates insist the revenue will "fill its storefronts and fix its roads." Writes Rick Hampson:

Those ideas are dooming what's left of the prohibition movement and shrinking Dry America, a region from the Carolinas to the Plains where many places still ban sales of some or all types of alcohol.

At a time when many states are debating marijuana policies -- 13 have decriminalized possession and 15 have medical marijuana programs -- the fight in Dry America is over alcohol.

To Winona Mayor Rusty Smith, "it almost seems like we're behind the times." To Jim Mosher, a national alcohol policy analyst, it shows how deeply the issue of intoxicants divides America's cultures, faiths and regions.

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