Wal-Mart wins challenge to state refusal of liquor licenses

An industry association representing Texas' liquor store operators says it will appeal a federal judge's ruling that opens the door for Walmart to sell liquor by the bottle in Texas.

U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman on Tuesday backed Walmart's constitutional challenge to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, which had refused Walmart licenses for retail liquor sales.

Walmart argued that the state's package liquor license restrictions, some dating to the end of Prohibition, amount to discrimination.

Lance Lively leads the 2,500-member Texas Package Stores Association. He said Wednesday that the ruling is disappointing and overturns decades of Texas law regulating liquor sales.

The association intervened in the lawsuit and backed the state's restrictions. The association says it will appeal to keep fighting for family-owned liquor store owners against large corporate entities.