Liquor stores in the District will be able to sell booze on July 4, which happens to fall this year on a Sunday, when such sales are usually prohibited.
The council approved the exception Tuesday, but not without some protest from members, including Yvette Alexander (D-Ward 7), who said, "the Jack Daniels and the firecrackers - that's not a good mix."
Council member Jim Graham (D-Ward 1), who sponsored the measure, said the law already allows similar exceptions when Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve fall on a Sunday.
"The District is a July 4 destination," said Graham, who added that Maryland and Virginia would allow sales on Independence Day.
Council member Tommy Wells (D-Ward 6) said the measure would only encourage more people to drink on a day when there are already issues with fireworks and rowdy parties.
"To make it easier to drink on that day is not a good recipe," Wells said.
Wells was joined in opposing the bill by Alexander and Kwame Brown (D-At Large).
According to the Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, 132 of the 332 state-run liquor stores are normally open on Sundays. Those that are normally closed will still be closed on July 4, said spokesman Philip Bogenberger.
- Ann E. Marimow, with reporting from Rosalind S. Helderman