Tennessee’s liquor retail licenses require residency within the state, which favors in-state retailers over out-of-state retailers. While the Twenty-first Amendment did grant to the states the power to regulate alcohol, the dormant commerce clause prohibits states from passing legislation that discriminates against or excessively burdens interstate commerce. 

Does Tennessee’s durational residency requirement unduly burden interstate commerce? C. Jarrett Dieterle of the R Street Institute explores how the Twenty-first Amendment and the dormant commerce clause interact in Tennessee Wine & Spirits Retailers Association v. Blair. Oral argument is January 16, 2019.

As always, the Federalist Society takes no particular legal or public policy positions. All opinions expressed are those of the speaker.

Learn more about C. Jarrett Dieterle:

Follow C. Jarrett Dieterle on Twitter: @cjdieterle


Related Links & Differing Views:

SCOTUSblog: “Argument preview: Justices to consider constitutionality of residency requirements for liquor licenses”

Alcohol Law Advisor: “Durational-Residency Requirements for Alcohol Beverage Retail Licensees Held Unconstitutional”

Widener Law Review: “Granholm v. Heald: Wine In, Wit Out”

California Law Review: “The Twenty-First Amendment and State Control over Intoxicating Liquor: Accommodating the Federal Interest”

Paul Gowder: “Understanding the Dormant Commerce Clause”

Duke Law Journal: “The Dormant Commerce Clause and the Constitutional Balance of Federalism”

Michigan Law Review: “The Supreme Court and State Protectionism: Making Sense of the Dormant Commerce Clause”