Paul Goldman: Wilder reconsidering support for McDonnell ABC plan? Prices would rise 30%.

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    Very interesting, nice work by former Doug Wilder advisor Paul Goldman to demonstrate that Bob McDonnell’s ABC privatization plan will raise the average retail price for a bottle of liquor by 30%. Now that’s Republican economics for you!

    Technically, I am just presuming what former Governor Doug Wilder will do when he gets a chance to review a study done for his Administration – the most comprehensive ever in Virginia – that found, when applied to the McDonnell ABC privatization approach [Wilder checked on that option] the following:  the average retail price for a bottle of liquor would increase by 30%!

    I just managed to get my hands on the 1993 study today, and while it takes a lot of effort to wade through the document, the findings are right there, can’t miss them if you read the whole thing.

    If anything, prices would have to raise even more in 2011, since the state has a bigger mark-up on hard liquor now than back then, so revenue neutrality is harder to due without even higher prices due to the way McDonnell-type plans have to work to replace this lost state revenue.  

    Someone, I know it isn’t easy since I had to do it for a few Governors, has to be the messenger of bad news to the Governor, indeed his staff,  which is job one ideally doesn’t ever want even on a one-time basis.

    But someone has to be a real friend to the Governor right now; he has been badly served by people who in my view had conflicting agendas. But no need to name names, they are good people, they just fell into a trap here, we are all human, mistakes happen. I can vouch for that.

    As I have said, there is a way, if we as a state want to get out of the businesses of selling liquor, to do ABC privatization so it avoids all these pitfalls, raises the money without new taxes, keeps consumer prices as low as market forces will take them, protects the rural areas, while providing the transportation funding.

    When former Governor Wilder gets a chance to review the study prepared for the Wilder Administration, he will see the hand-writing on the wall.

    • Elaine in Roanoke

      Paul Goldman is a godsend for us Dems at a time when the DPVA is on extended leave from political battles…or is AWOL.

    • VA Blogger

      The Governor and his staff have laid out many documents supporting their proposal. A response of “nuh-uh” should have more backup.  

    • blue bronc

      The Whiskey Rebellion of 1794 is regarded as one of the first tests of federal authority in United States history and of the young nation’s commitment to the constitutional rule of law.

      What does the Whiskey Rebellion have to do with CH McDonnell getting rid of the Virginia whiskey selling?  Not much except for refusing to believe the United States is really a federation of united states and that he and CH Cooch do not believe that Virginia is one of the states.

      But, even more interesting would be the great Whiskey Tax insurrection of 2010 by the faithful imbibers of Virginia refusing to pay even higher amounts of tax to get a good buzz on. I suppose one way would be to follow the sales of Mason jars or perhaps the booze sales from other adjoining states.

    • libra

      last year’s electoral disaster in VA, I stopped giving a flying duck about Wilder and his opinions. Had I been his fan on Facebook, I’d have “defriended” him 🙂