NH House Republican Alliance: Statement on the defeat of HB1436 Minors and Alcohol

The House Republican Alliance issued a statement on the defeat of HB1436, a bill that would allow minors to being possession of alcohol in certain circumstances. 

There are at times when the House of Representatives clearly shows that people are not paying attention, or worse, reading even the shortest of bills.  That happened today in the House when the Democratic Majority Leader and the Democratic Floor Leader spoke on the house floor about HB1436.  Both loudly and proudly proclaimed that there were against underage drinking and therefore could not support HB1436.

"Maybe they should have read the bill," said Hudson Republican Representative Lynne Ober.  "This bill provided a few narrow exceptions for those under the age of 21.  For example does someone under the age of 21 drive a relative, perhaps a grandmother, to the grocery store and part of that purchase is a bottle of wine (unopened) or a 6 pack of beer.  Currently this young driver could be charged with a violation for "transporting liquor" even though that young driver is really transporting a grandmother with her groceries, which do include some unopened item of liquor legally purchased at the grocery store."   

The bill does provide exemptions for the use of liquor for medical reasons or for religious reasons.   It does not condone or legalize underage drinking and it is curious that two prominent democrats had not read this short bill and yet spoke about it on the floor of the House.