Poll Shows People Still Opposed to Liquor Board as Corbett Logs More Face Time

It’s full speed ahead for Pennsylvania’s liquor privatization advocates. Yesterday, the conservative Commonwealth Foundation released a poll they commissioned through public opinion research group Fairbank, Maslin, Maulin, Metz and Associates — a firm, it was correctly pointed out by CF, with a majority Democrat client list — and found the same results polls on the Liquor Control Board have been finding for years: Most Pennsylvanians would like to see it go.

The poll found 61 percent total in favor of privatization, and 35 against. That includes 41 percent who are “strongly” in favor of ending the government monopoly on booze and 19 percent who “somewhat” favored it. Twenty percent were strongly opposed and 14 percent was “somewhat opposed.”

That gave way to both a new CF-affiliated website titled BoozeFacts.com (they also run FreeMyDrink.com) and a Gov. Corbett press conference this morning at 10:30 a.m., conveniently live-streamed over the Internet. Going with his new-found love of Facetime and dedication to Pennsylvania’s cherished young, the governor noted of the $1 billion that could be raised from selling off liquor stores and other PLCB infrastructure: “We can invest it one time, in our children,” he said, standing alongside other Pennsylvania Republicans. He similarly stated during his budget address last week that selling liquor is not the responsibility of government, but providing education is.

“By this summer or by next summer, at the latest, you won’t go to the shore to buy your beer,” he added. “You can buy it here and take it with you.”

When asked about the CF poll, he said he thinks the numbers help his case, and if there were no small details done to get the job done, “It passes easily in my mind.”

Said poll actually noted “less government regulation” was the top reason for supporting privatization; convenience came second; keeping up with other states was third; and better prices was fourth. Which may explain why Corbett noted during the presser that he wants to “leave Utah in the dust” — Utah being the only other state in which the government is in charge of both retail and wholesale of alcohol.

As it happens, Philadelphia County residents were the only in the state in which a majority supports the PLCB — and we’ve yet to find a single Democratic legislator in support of the governor’s, or Rep. Mike Turzai’s (R-Allegheny), plan to eliminate the stores. And while it may be true Philly residents are cool with the liquor stores the way they are, a PLCB survey found that 45 percent of us leave the state to get our liquor.

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