Tuesday, May 7, 2013

No Booze on Election Day. or the Day Before, or the Day Before That, or ...

Some people in the US complain because the bars are closed on Election Day. Jimmy Breslin, a well-known journalist and writer who ran for office in New York City in the sixties, began his concession speech by saying, "I am mortified to have taken part in a process that required bars to be closed."

I bring this up because the Philippines is having an election next week, and they're banning liquor sales for five days.
The Commission on Elections (Comelec), in its resolution dated February 26, decided to extend to five days the usual 48-hour or two-day liquor ban prior to the elections. 
Comelec assistant regional director Reddy Balarbar said the resolution is timely, adding that election-related violence is on its peak during the homestretch of the campaign leading to the Election Day due to numerous campaign rallies and early celebrations of some candidates. 
Liquor ban shall take effect from May 9 to May 13, the Election Day. 
Comelec resolution 9582 prohibits any person, including owners and managers of hotels and establishments, to sell, furnish, offer, buy, serve, or take intoxicating liquor anywhere in the Philippines.
Violation of the liquor or alcohol ban is considered an election offense and is punishable with imprisonment of not less than one year but not more than six years and shall not be subject to probation.
I know some expats who are really upset by this, and are rushing out to stock up.

As an aside, when I lived in the Chicago area, we lived just off the golf course of a country club, a couple hundred yards from the clubhouse. It always amused me that the club's bar was our precinct polling place.

Made perfect sense, actually -- a big room (they pushed tables out of the way to make room for the voting booths), plenty of parking, and it wasn't being used that day anyway.

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